Saturday, January 31, 2009

pot roast extraordinaire

So whenever meat is buy one get one free I always stock up because it is quite expensive compared to the other items that go into making a meal. (I know this is killing you Em, sorry) So a month or so ago I bought some pot roast meat...I made one roast with coffee (which I think I told you all about) and now it has come time to cook the other pot roast (aka I don't want to go to the store and buy more chicken--therefore use the frozen reserves). So I looked and I looked in all my trusty cookbooks and websites and did not find a recipe suitable for the ingredients I had in my house. (I usually go to the grocery store 2-4 times a week on average and no I do not want to venture out of my warm home to treck in the snow for 5 minutes for one ingredient that I don't have.) This leads to the creation of Snowy, Lazy Day Pot Roast. I took what I had and threw it together in a crock pot, completely guessed the time (5.5 hours) and prayed that it would come out somewhat decent. And guess did! I am so very proud of myself! See, I am a cook that usually abides by the recipe, occasionally adding one more spice...I rarely create something all by my self, let alone my very first pot roast! So I added some of this and a dash of that and voila! A wonderful pot roast, yes, I'm patting myself on the back, please join with me as I revel in this moment!

Friday, January 30, 2009

add one more to the Wolfpack, please

Yes, that's my little sister, Katie, was accepted to the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at good ol' North Carolina State University!!! Wahoo!! I am so very proud of her!!! I cannot express my joy and pride in her! She will be going to study Political Science. Yay Katie!! You are so brilliant and wonderful and I'm so proud that you'll be on my old stompin grounds for the next 4 years! (the term old stompin grounds is a tribute to my dad--he loves that term)

Thursday, January 29, 2009


As you can see I'm posting a lot of posts with "love" in them. Well even though I don't really celebrate V-day I can still be festive right? It just seems right. So in the spirit of love I will name 10 things I love lately (not in order):

1. Beautiful white crown moulding in my bedroom
2. A fully painted guest room
3. Sweet phone conversations this week with people that are dear to me
4. Big, fat, lazy snowflakes falling from the sky
5. A good night of sleep
6. Reading (I'm really missing it with doing all this housework and all, I haven't had time to read...sad)
7. Lunch on Fridays, it has become a tradition in HR that we order chinese every Friday...yum
8. The Bachelor (Yes, I'm ashamed to admit it but I've been watching it and I LOVE the drama!)
9. Working out...I know, I know what a surprise right? Well, I just feel better after I work out, so ha!
10. Having this cord hooked up to my treadmill so that I can plug my headphones in it and hear the TV, which means I get to watch episodes of Will & Grace while I work out (thanks hubby for hooking that up!)

love to the innies (in-laws)

Ok, so what I like to abbreviate things...that's kind of a disease that runs in the women of my family. So I thought I should abbreviate in-laws...I mean "innies" does sound better than something with the word "law" in it. Anywho, we were surpised to see quite a sizable package on our front porch today filled with stuff from my innies (aka John's mom and dad)! There were quite an aray of things but I would say my fave item was a wedding DVD that Gary (father innie...ok maybe that's taking it a little too far) made for John and I to remember our special day! We watched it while we ate our pizza and it was so sweet! I laughed and I cried (just a little though) and it made me want to go back to that special day and relive the whole thing. Everyone looked so happy and like they were having a great time. Thank you so much Gary for making that, we really appreciate it, it brought back more memories and emotions than you know! Such a sweet gift :)

much love to Dad

After someone pointed out to me today that I left a very important man in my life out of my "i love you more than notes"...I decided that I needed to go and show my love to my dad. Dad, I posted an I love you heart on that's what yours says:

I love you more than cheez-its and popcorn combined.

Now you know that's a lot of love Dad! And no I didn't just do it because I felt guilty. Please accept this is as my public apology for my lack of love shown to you (I kinda feel like a political figure apologizing for some scandal or something...). I love you a whole lot Dad...maybe more than you love exercising!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

speaking of love...

Since I was so excited about my "love note" being posted online I figured it could be dinner conversation. So I told John about it and I asked him what he loved me more than, his response was of course "I love you more than I hate the Tarheels". Big surprise there. So then I pushed my all-too-creative husband to list 4 things he loved me more than, and for every one that he said I said's how the conversation went (I'm sure you can guess whose was whose):

"cream soda"
"my Uggs"
"the Wolfpack"
"having nothing to do but read a book without being interrupted"
"the Bengals"
"designer clothes that I can't afford"
"the Rangers"
"that's not fair! you just keep naming different teams"
"well that's what I love"
"fine, sweet tea...wait, I love you more than a meal from Chickfila and Bojangles combined!"
"I love you more than all dairy products combined!"

And that's how it ended folks, I don't know if I can compete with that...because that man loves cheese and milk alone more than any other person I've ever met. Hope you enjoyed our dinner convo :)

yay for love!

So as I said earlier you can post how much you love people on And today I saw one, then two, then three posts that I put up there! Yay! I was so excited that they were actually posted, not that I checked 10 times since I posted them, but whatever. Since I am not as techie as my hubbie and he is at night class, I can't figure out how to put the little hearts on my blog, so I'm just going to post what I put and people can find them if they wish.

for my husband:
"I love you more than I miss Diet Mt. Dew"
for my sister:
"I love you more than my luggage"
and for my mom:
"I love you more than a good glass of dry red wine"

Sorry for those who didn't get "i love you notes" but after 3 I felt like a spaz, you know I love you anyway :)

Saturday, January 24, 2009

old recipe, new look

Last night when I was in no mood to cook, definitely didn't want to eat out, and was desperate for a "good for you" recipe...I turned to my dad's infamous Mexican dip. We then went to the grocery store and picked up the necessary items and came home to cook and eat. However since we're trying to be healthier eaters, I changed a few of the items and the dish was still delish! Here's a list of the old ingredients and then the new:

1 lb. ground beef
8 oz. creamed cheese
1 can refried beans (16 oz.)
1 jar of salsa (16 oz.)
1 cup mexican blend cheese

New and improved:
1 lb. ground turkey
8 oz. fat free creamed cheese
1 can fat free refried beans (16 oz.)
1 jar salsa (16 oz.)
1 cup of 2% mexican cheese, no hormones added
1 tbsp. of chopped fresh green onions

In a glass pie dish coat bottom with creamed cheese, spread evenly. Brown the meat (set aside). Laer one 16 oz. can of refried beans onto the lined dish. Next layer the browned meat on top of the beans. Pour in a jar of your fave salsa. Sprinkle one cup of cheese (shredded) on top. place in the oven at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes, uncovered. Serve with tortilla chips.

John and I love this recipe and even though we changed it a bit, it was still so good!

i love you more than...

My friend Pam sent me this link and I loved it! It was so cute, so I thought that I might share it with you all!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

cold day surprises!

I came home to three wonderful surprises today! The first was a happy husband who felt accomplished because he had been building shelves (and a not so good surprise...a very messy basement complete with sawdust in the carpet, oh well whatever). After I greeted hubby he so casually says "oh you got a package today" this happens everyday or something! Hello, a package is like a little gift from heaven to me! So I found the package in our living room near the front door with a card on top. I opened the card first (which was my second surprise) and it was from one of my best friends, Morgan! It was a hilarious card with a sweet little message from her inside, thanks Morgan, it definitely made me laugh! The third surprise was a box from my cuzzie Emily! Inside I found a sweet little note accompanied with packing popcorn. Each time I dug beneath the popcorn I pulled out yet another gift. The first was a candy cane that is at least a foot long (wahoo!), then I pulled out a few issues of Glamour, Country Living, and The Nest (I love magazines!) and then Martha Stewart cooking magazines! After that were lots of great books that I've been dying to read! Every time she posts a book review on her blog I immediately want to read the book. I cannot wait to dive into all of them! Thank you so much Em, that meant so much to me!!! All of the surprises MADE MY DAY! So thank you to all of you, loves ya!

snow white

While I've been painting the past couple of days, I have of course been listening to my iPod. I came across a song that I adore, it is so sweet and the song is Snow White by Ryan Long. Ryan Long is a singer/songwriter that performs at YoungLife camps (as well as other places I'm sure, but that's how I know of him). My sister introduced me to this song and I just love it! The song is about his friend and his friend's daughter who were on a trip at Disney. They were standing and waiting for a Disney parade and his daughter was particularly excited about seeing Snow White. It is just so sweet, it reminds me of the wonder and excitement that embodies little girls (and all little children). When I listen to it, I just imagine a little girl twirling around in all of her glory, having the best time of her life. This song reminds me that life is simple and we must seek the simple beauties in our every day (that may be reading too much into it, but I like thinking that). But here is a link to the song...go listen to it (I listened to it 4 times in a row last night!)!

Sorry, I don't know how to put the actual video in the post, so you'll just have to copy and paste the link into your web browser.

this old house update

It has recently occurred to me that old houses are a work in progress. That's fine though, because we're young and ambitious so this is the best time to live in an old house. Mind you, our house was in great condition before we bought it (its not like we had to restructure the foundation...who knows if that's even a real term...but we haven't had to do anything major except when we had to have a hole in our living room ceiling to fix the upstairs bathroom, but that's a whole other story) BUT we (I) did not like any of the colors in the home which called for an entire house painting! I know that you all have struggled through this with me, listening to my rants and complaints and then blissful wonder when a room was finally finished. Ok, back on track...updates with the house. John painted his office two weekends ago and it looks wonderful! A Mediterranean ocean color looks much better than two-tone purple with a large star on one wall and a large moon on the other (it was a nursery before). Now I am painting our guest room! Three walls will be a tan color and one wall will be a brick(ish) color, I'm going for an "earthtones motif", I want it to feel warm and inviting to visitors (aww, I know how sweet, I'm such a great hostess...haha). I have officially put two coats on all of the tan walls and all that's left is the brick(ish) wall and the trim! John is on the other side of the house (and by side I mean my work is on the top floor and his is in the basement)...and he is building bookshelves! He was getting tired of my growing book collection sitting around in random piles or stacked in different places so voila! I will shortly have bookshelves! (I'll post pics later, promise)! The next task will be completed by my hopeful husband...installing crown moulding (I'm sure that will be really pleasant time) in our master bedroom. So there is the update on our old house!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

V-day reservations for 3 please

Yes you read correctly John and I will be having our first visitor for 2009 over Valentine's day weekend! And the winner is (drum roll please).....our great friend Pamela! She's coming all the way from fancy schmancy Manhattan to see what the burgh is like and to visit with some of her faves (duh). She'd been planning a trip but we just didn't know when, then she asked if she could come over President's Day weekend and then realized that also happened to be Valentine's Day weekend but of course this was no biggie because these JKs don't really celebrate V-day. Our biggest blow out for V-day has been getting a pizza, hanging out and buying each other candy. And this particular weekend is also fitting for our friendship because Pamela comfortably would accompany J and I on hang out time quite often at our house (oh Dixie!) so it would only be right if she were with us on our first married V-day! So needless to say we are so excited to see her! Wahoo!! Maybe we'll have the guest room all painted and ready for ya Pammy :) Love ya!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

fried chicken that's good for you?

Well yes, you read correctly. I made oven-fried chicken last night and it was quite delicious! This recipe was of course from Cooking Light (thanks again Heather!). This particular recipe is from a spread where they compare the certain dish with one you would maybe have at a fast food restaurant and then a healthier version you can make at home. Just because I love my readers so much I will share the love:

Buttermilk Oven-Fried Chicken

1 cup low-fat buttermilk
4 (8 oz.) bone-in chicken breast halves, skinned (I went with boneless)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cracker meal
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 tbsp. butter

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2. To prepare chicken, combine buttermilk and chicken in a shallow dish, turning to coat.
3. Combine flour and cracker meal in a shallow dish. Transfer chicken from buttermilk to a work surface. Sprinkle chicken with part of the salt and pepper. Working with one chicken breast half at a time, dredge chicken in flour mixture, shaking off excess; set aside. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken and flour mixture.
4. Melt butter in a large ovenproof non-stick skillet over med-high heat. Add chicken to pan, meat side down; cook 4 minutes or until golden brown. Turn chicken over, and back at 425 for 32 minutes or until a thermometer registers 165 degrees.

Here's a few helpful tips:
If you don't have buttermilk and don't use it often so you don't want to buy a carton of it you can do this: mix 1 cup of milk with 1 Tbsp. of vinegar and voila! You have your cup of buttermilk! Another tip is: if you don't know what cracker meal is or you don't want to buy a whole bag for just a little bit you can finely crush 10 Ritz crackers (which is what I did) and there you have your own homemade cracker meal!

Here's the difference in fast food facts and the homemade healthy version:
Fast food:
Calories: 540
Fat: 31 grams
Sodium: 1, 290 milligrams

Homemade healthy:
Calories: 342
Fat: 8.8 grams
Sodium: 672 milligrams

Now doesn't that make you just now want to eat fast food? Hope you enjoy!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

zero degrees, seriously?!

For any of you who have talked to me in the past two days you've already heard my complaints, but here we go again. The highest it will get tomorrow is 7 degrees (but feels like -9 says)!!! I am astonished! I woke up to 9 degrees this morning and I saw on trusty that it will be 0 degrees tomorrow morning!!!! How is that possible?! Has this really happened before I moved here?! (yes of course I know that it really has, I'm just showing my shock and self-absorbness when it concerns the weather in other parts of the country) I just can't fathom 0 degrees! And I thought that 30 was cold. Ha...ha...ha (that was Danny style from Grease). Wow. Just wanted to share...


Since I'm on my ipod kick I thought that I would give you all a taste of some of the songs that I listen to while I work out...and yes some of these will be "taking it back to the old school, because I'm an old fool and I'm so cool"(name that song!).

In no particular order:

1. Whoomp! (There it is!) by Tag Team...(Jock Jams version, please and thank you)
2. Baby One More Time by none other than Ms. Britney Spears--give me one woman from the age 20-30 that doesn't know all of the words to this song
3. Catch My Disease by Ben Lee
4. Taylor by Jack Johnson (this is for the cool down part of the work out)
5. Say My Name (Remix) by Destiny's Child
6. My Humps by Black Eyed Peas (I'm slightly embarrassed to admit that I love this song, but hey, we're all being honest here, right?)
7. Since You Been Gone by Kelly Clarkson
8. Such Great Heights by The Postal Service (I prefer the Iron & Wine version for cool down)
9. Party Starter by Will Smith
10. No Scrubs by TLC (for stretching afterwards)

Hopefully this inspired you to download some of these or revisit an old cd. What can I say, I love my old music--its hard to let go.

doughnuts galore!

I saw this on my cousin Emily's blog and thought that I should share it with my readers as well...

Tuesday (Inauguration day) Krispy Kreme is giving away one free doughnut of choice to everyone that comes in.

However, Dunkin Donuts is having frosted doughnuts with red and blue sprinkles from Saturday until Tuesday. So go out and get some doughnuts!! And get one for me too because we don't have either one of those places near us! Hmm...I wonder if any of the local Jewish bakeries will be giving away freebies...(no this isn't a racial slur, I live in the 2nd largest Jewish community in the nation, they're everywhere and I love it!).

a gal's best friend

Ok, I have 2 little stories leading up to a bigger story, so follow me...

Story 1: During our move to the burgh I somehow lost my ipod charger, therefore leaving me without an ipod since August. Well it is kind of my nature that when things don't work to keep on living without them, so this didn't really phase me until I wanted to start getting serious about working out and then I missed my pod. Well I guess complaining CAN get you somewhere and it got me 3 different chargers! One that plugs into the wall, the computer and the car (thanks hubby!). So now I am reunited with my pod, thank goodness!

Story 2: I can be dramatic. I was just raised this way and I am completely comfortable with it.

The story that started this post: Like I said, my pod and I were reunited (and it feels so good) so then I went walking on my treadmill. This may sound dramatic but I felt so excited and connected to the music on my pod, songs that I haven't heard in months! They just made me so happy!! I was so energetic that I walked for almost an hour and didn't even realize it! I was also occasionally dancing while walking or adding a little sass to the walk (imagine that) depending on what song was playing. Man I love that ipod, it really is a gal's (who's trying to be fit and trying even harder to be excited about trying to be fit) best friend! Love it!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

new recipe

The JKs are getting healthy this year; we're eating right and staying/getting fit (you can guess who is staying and who is trying to "get fit")! With that being said we are eating light, good for you meals. I received my first issue of Cooking Light a few days ago many thanks to Heather (and Patrick)! It was my Christmas gift from them. Not trying to sound dramatic, but I vowed on the day that I got it that I would not live without it again. It is incredible! All of the recipes look so good, they're healthy and look fairly easy for the most part. Seriously, I'm so excited to have this subscription, I suggest all of you look into it. Anywho...tonight I chose to make a recipe from the magazine (its actually for a Campbell's soup ad in the mag...but a healthy recipe all the same).

Quick & Easy Chicken Vegetable Paella

2 tbsp. olive oil
3 (6 oz.) boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-in. strips
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp. turmeric (I didn't have this nor did I take the time to figure out what it was so I just used fajita seasoning)
1 red bell pepper, large dice
1 (8oz.) pkg, frozen pearl onions
1 1/2 cups converted white rice (that just means white rice)
1 can of condensed tomato soup
2 cups water
2 tbsp. lemon juice, fresh
1/2 tsp. cracked black pepper
1 (5 oz.) pkg. frozen peas, thawed

Heat large skillet over med. heat, and add oil, coating bottom of skillet. Add chicken, and cook until slightly browned. Add garlic and turmeric; cook 1 minute. Add bell pepper and pearl onions; cook and stir 2 minutes.

Combine, in separate bowl, soup, water, lemon juice, and black pepper, mixing well.

Add rice to skillet, mixing well. Then add soup mixture and stir to incorporate.

Cover and set heat to low; cook for 22 min. Remove from heat, and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes. Stir in green peas and serve!

It was quite a delicious recipe, enjoy!!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

simple pleasures

You caught me, I'm trying to make up for my lack of posts over my Christmas vacay. Right now I would like to list a few of my new found simple pleasures:

1. Hot apple cider: so delish! I love it! I've only tried it in the last year and I really enjoy it. I had a cup at my aunt Cissy's house on Christmas day and told her how wonderful it was so she gave me a little bag of mulling spices to make some of my own (sanks Cissy!). Tonight was the night, I poured a bottle of apple juice in my crock pot and mixed in the spices. Some of you may say that this is a festive drink, therefore it is out of date. I may say I've been drinking only water for the last 8 days and I need some flavor in my life and its 21 degrees outside and my Southern body was not created for this icy coldness so I need something to warm me up.

2. This blog: I've just figured out that this blog is my outlet of humor. It seems that no one up here really "gets" my humor (yes, I know this is breaking many of my close friends and family's well as my own). I am surprised when I make a joke at work and the person simply looks at me and smiles or looks away and pretends they didn't hear when the joke would atleast warrant a rolling laughter! Therefore all of my creative, comedic energy is thrown into this blog, so I hope you all are enjoying it and atleast laughing to yourselves (please tell me you're laughing to yourselves...I'm desperate).

3. Spending time with my hub. He hasn't gone back to classes yet so this past week we've been able to hang out/I follow him around the house watching whatever random project it is that he's doing. But it is nice to be married to a person who is less stressed (for the time being). I'm soaking up every bit of this "pre-semester niceness" that is encompassing my husband right now. :)

Jon & Kate book

First of all I love, love, LOVE this family! I'm addicted to their show, Jon & Kate plus 8!! They have an adorable family...that's right, with 8 kids! They first had twins and then sextuplets, and they are all so cute! I am definitely ok with admitting that I'm obsessed with this family, if they didn't live on the other side of PA I would volunteer to watch their kids one night each week so that they could go on a date. The thing I love about the show is that they are very real, the parents argue, the kids annoy them and fight with each other. Now don't think that this is WWF family style, there are many sweet, sweet moments. But what I'm saying is that I love that they are not pretending to always be happy go lucky, you know me...lovin' that honesty. And they love the Lord...which segways me into my next topic...their book! Yes, they wrote a book on what it was like to have 8 children in less than 4 years. Can you imagine? (Since Santa knows me so well, he just so happened to leave this book in my pile of gifts on Christmas morning (wahoo!) and by Christmas night I was already halfway through it.) It is a really great book and they are a really great family. Seriously, can't express how much I adore this family. Their show is on TLC on Monday nights at 9 (and no, I'm not getting paid to advertise for them). And here is a pic of their book!

Happy Birthday Momma!!

Hey everyone today is my mom's 50th birthday! 50 years young, right Mom? She is quite a wonderful woman and I love her so much! In honor of her birthday I will list 10 great qualities about her, and awayyyy we go:

1. She is very giving to everyone (the needy, loved ones, etc.), she would give you the bracelet off of her arm if you wanted it.
2. She can whip up a flower arrangement in minutes (displayed at my wedding and both of my cuzzies' weddings).
3. She has balanced being a working mom so well throughout mine and Katie's lives.
4. She will listen and talk for hours (John can attest to this...he walked in on many talks throughout Christmas time).
5. She gives great advice, I've always sought her advice...since I was in first grade and even to this day and she always seems to know how to handle the situation.
6. She has provided me with many things throughout my life but most importantly she's taught me good character, morals, responsibility, how to really love someone, humility and helped me to mature.
7. She is an incredible shopper! I mean I tell this lady one thing I just so happen to be looking for and what do ya know, 3 days later she's found it and is shipping it to me!
8. When I'm home she will stay up with me as late as I stay up even if she has to wake up at 6:30 and go to work the next day (sanks Mom!).
9. She is absolutely beautiful, always has been, always will be! I'm banking on inheriting those "staying gorgeous as you age" genes from her (please God!).
10. She has tremendous faith. I've learned many lessons from her like how to trust God in any situation and to always be thankful for what you have no matter how much or how little it is.

Mom, you're awesome! I love you so much and I'm proud to call you my Marmey!!!!!!!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The end of a lifelong love affair

Haha, I bet that caught some attention. Well the day has come and I have ended my love affair with my beloved Diet Mountain Dew. (side note: I've only loved DMD since college but before that I loved its painfully 'worse for you' sister--Mountain Dew for as long as I can remember) Since I was a kid, if I had a choice I would choose Mt.Dew. Its just so wonderful and delicious and I am convinced it is full of goodness from heaven (or tons of carbs, calories, and, you say tomato, I saw tomAto). Then there was a month of my life where I drank only water...I then craved any drink with flavor and turned to DMD....hallelujah, thank you Lord!!! (seriously) Well, I'm sure there have been very few days since that glorious day that I've gone without a DMD for a day. I had my per day and I stuck to it for the most part. Some of you may even know that John's marriage proposal to me involved a vintage, glass DMD bottle (man, I DO love him!). So yes, I am...was obsessed. And for my loyal readers you will know that I said awhile ago that I was giving up my sweet soda goodness for a stupid new year's resolution. Well, I am proud to announce that I have been DMD free since January 1! And the saddest thing to me is that it crept up on me and I didn't even get to have a "final drink" with a can of DMD...I know it sounds dramatic, but I'm sad about it. Well I've been jonesin for a DMD and it ain't easy weaning yourself off of something so irresistable. For instance, today had some low points and I was CRAVING a DMD but I resisted, I thought that warranted applause but no one in my office seemed to notice...jerks. Anyway, be proud...but not too proud because I'm not making promises. I'm holding out for as long as humanly possible.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

New post for a new year!

Hello everyone we're baaaaack! Yes, yes we've made it back all in one piece after a long, wonderful vacay (the other JK would love the I'm abbreviating, that's his fave thing that I do...please take note of the sarcasm)! Anyway, we had an awesome Christmas! Thank you everyone for the gifts and for taking time out of your schedules to visit with us! For those of you that we couldn't see, we'll see you next time :) Seriously, it was a great Christmas...I will highlight a few of the gifts that we got, since it would be ridiculous to list them all. Hubby gave me a very, very soft bathrobe and blanket. I gave him a telescope (what else do you get a techie who has everything?)...which he loved! We received a handcrafted swing for our front porch from my parents (wahoo!)...which will be making its way up here this spring, who knew that a porch swing wouldn't fit in a coupe? Amongst all of that there were many clothes (thank you Lord!), shoes, tools, DVDs, and other various items that we loved and were thankful for! So to everyone thank you, thank you, thank you!!! We loved it! It was so relaxing and fun :)

We also visited Washington DC before we went to NC for Christmas. We were able to see my friends Grace and Liz and John's friend JT. It was great to see them in the actual city that they live in! We had a really fun time visiting the monuments, memorials, and museums. We even saw the national Christmas tree (pictures will be posted soon)!

After Christmas we still lounged around NC for awhile being lazy and we were able to ring in the New Year with my parents, my sisty and her boyfriend Andre. We had a great night of dinner and dancing! We then swung by SC to see John's brother Patrick and his wife, Heather and our sweet niece, Anna. Thanks for letting us come guys! We had a great time being lazy with ya'll and just visiting. Its bittersweet to be back. Good to be back in the swing of things even though I will quickly get tired of it and bad to leave a lot of the people we love. Anywho...that's our holiday update!