Saturday, May 30, 2009

Weekend Warriors...

In my first few years out of college I was the essential weekend warrior. I worked ridiculously hard all week, 60+ hours or more, went to grad school Monday -Thursday nights, and let loose like a crazy person from Thursday night (after class) until Saturday night, when I would usually pass out from sheer exhaustion (and sometimes over intoxication). Although these warrior days are only two years ago, for Mr. R. and I the definition of weekend warrior has changed drastically.

This weekend I have a mile long "to-do" list of house projects, meetings, and a dinner with friends. I love my weekends, but now they are starting to feel even more jammed pack than my work week.

Here is the to do list... let's hope I can make a dent in it before Sunday night at 11:00pm

Clean out and scrub refrigerator -success!
mop kitchen floor -success!
clean out cabinets and pantry -success!
mop wood floors with orange glow (I love the shine & smell afterward) -postponed
dust Casa Republican -success!
Shampoo carpets - failed :(
Buy new bedding for master bedroom - postponed
Clean closet and switch out all winter clothes - success!
Mounds of LAUNDRY!!! -semi success
Clean out gutters - success!
Find dress for next weekend's festivities - success!
Clean bathrooms (scrub toilets, shower, and vanities) -failed :(
mop bathroom floors - failed :(
trim bushes - success!
drinks and dinner with Roy & Jen - success!
movie date with Mr. R - postponed
Clean out cars: vacuum and shampoo car interior - postponed
wash & scrub shower curtains -postponed
buy new pillows for bedroom -postponed
cook for Sunday dinner party (dinner part was postponed and we ate Coney dogs instead!)
grocery shop - success!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Blogger crush!

For the record Mr R. is the love of my life and I am very happily married. That being said, I have a new girl blogger crush and her name is Katie Bower. I LOVE LOVE LOVE her blog, home ideas, cheapness, and ability to see the value in pops of white! I need her to come to Saint Augustine and be my new best friend.

Monday, May 25, 2009

This Young House Inspiration

I have logged too many hours combing through every detail of John & Sherry Pesternik's renovation on this young house. I first discovered them through DIY magazine and now I cannot get enough of their blog. I actually check it every morning after my devotional. (A girl's got priorites).

When Mr. R and I first started renovating our house I kept magazine clippings, print outs, and paint chips in a scrapbook that I would carry around like a bible. I didn't make a single decision before consulting the "house bible". In an effort to save paper and time, I have yet again stolen (borrowed) another idea from this young house. I created a mood board to describe and detail our goals from the dining room to den makeover.

We currently have an informal dining room that we use rarely. Truth be told Mr. R and I eat most of our meals in the living room at the coffee table. It just seems like too much effort to carry all the food into the dining room and bring all the dishes back. We have a very large great room in Casa de Republican and I would like to move the table into the greatroom and make the dining room into a den/TV room.

This would allow for our living room to be the formal space I have always imagined and still give us a totally relaxing TV room perfect for movie nights and afternoon naps.

Here's the plan:

Move out the dining room table, chairs and hutch. (The small buffet will stay behind). It provides great storage which we could totally use in the den.

Move in the two chaise and a new IKEA couch. All furniture will be beige. The room is currently very bright and mimics some of the colors we saw during our honeymoon in Greece & Turkey. The plan is to keep the space light and bright, but keep the furniture and accents neutral.

The space has hardwood floors which we plan to cover partly with a soft and squishy wool area rug. (I love the pottery barn Quinn rug, but hear very scary things about the shedding). I also want to move in two white bookcases to hold magazines, scrapbooks, novels, boardgames, and DVDs. I am also hoping to store the Wii supplies in these bookcases as well.

Of course we'll move the TV into the den, but instead of using the matching coffee table I would like to get a leather ottoman/coffee table. The Potterybarn one is costly, but should be an investment.

Since the walls are yellow, I think the yellow hemnes IKEA bedside table will be a great addition (next to the couch). We already have the wicker rocking chair (pictured on the moodboard) and I think it would look perfect infront of the bookcases.

We'll replace the current ceiling fan with a light fixture or ceiling fan with light attached. (I vote for the ceiling fan it get's hot here in FLA).

And lastly, a few accent pillows will add some extra color and carry over to the colors we already have in the greatroom. Let me know what you think... The plan will go into action as soon as school is out and the floors are in!

Thank you!

To our veterans both past and current, thank you for giving up your lives, your loves, and your comforts to fight for my freedom. I am in awe of your sacrifice, bravery, and courage.

On this Memorial Day Mr. R and I will be attending a BBQ at my grandparents. On this day I am very thankful to: be living in a free nation, have the right to vote, go to church, and to speak my mind. I am also very thankful to not have to cook tonight!

Getting back to the norm, here is my weekly menu post. We are trying to eat out of the pantry this week and only by fresh fruits and veggies. I have had to get a little more creative with the staples this week to use what we have, but its all for a good cause! All money saved goes to the vacation fund.

Monday: BBQ at the Grands. (Free!)

Tuesday: Beer marinated crockpot pork served in soft tortillas with blackbeans & spanish rice. (I got pork tenderloins on sale at Costco. And while they were a great deal, they have been sucking up primo space in my freezer!)

Wednesday: Dinner out to celebrate Lindsay's 25th!

Thursday: Ravioli with meatballs (& leftover sausage), green salad with Italian dressing

Friday: BBQ with friends. Blue cheese bacon sliders, cheddar stuffed hotdogs, baked beans, and potato salad. To drink: Rachael Ray's burbon mint iced tea.

Saturday: BBQ leftovers

Sunday: Homemade Pesto Pizza, ceasar salad, (my new favorite from Total Wine) Vihno Verde, & strawberry shortcake

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Home Depot Sunday

It's hard to believe that I have been a homeowner for 9 months now! When we were living in DC and paying our rent in blood & body parts we couldn't imagine ever owning a home. We had hopes for a two bedroom condo or a balcony, but never a home of our own. When we closed last August we were in a state of shock. Some days when I pull in the driveway I still have to pinch myself to believe we did it! Mr. R and I actually put down roots and started a real grown-up life.

The only downside to this amazing, home-owning, adult living life is all those little projects that come along with the monthly mortgage payment.
Mr. R and I made a to-do list a few weeks ago (listing various needs and wants) for our 40 year old concrete and brick baby. We decided to use some of the precious savings and our tax return to tackle installing new floors, creating a puppy park for Simon and Sophie, and fixing our front walk (which currently consists of overgrown weeds mixed with gravel).

I braved Home Depot today (with many other couples dressed in Sunday best. I guess we all decided not to go home and change.) in hopes to pick out a dark wood floor with "some character" and a picket fence (that is made of plastic, not wood that has to be painted).

We found a fence that is perfect. It will keep our two badly behaved pups in check and still look very quaint Americana (I have no idea what look I am trying to covey by that description) and DuPont triple layer laminate flooring! The floors are a little more expensive than we had hoped, but they will blend better with the original wood we have in the dining room and hall and should provide more character than the wood we had originally settled on.

Now it's time to write the big check and set up the appointments. I can't wait to start crossing out a few numbers on the old list!

Congratulations Peter & Molly!

Although I may not look like it, I am a hopeless romantic who swoons to love songs, cries at weddings, and loves a happy ending. Last night, Mr. R and I had the pleasure of attending the wedding of two of our college students Molly & Peter.

They are two of the most precious and genuine people we have ever met. They love Christ with all their heart and you can see that his love is not only present in their individual lives, but in their love for each other.

I think my favorite part of any wedding is hearing the vows the bride and groom pledge to each other. In a world plagued by divorce, adultery, self-love, and anger it is refreshing to be inspired by young love promising to be faithful in sickness, health, poverty, and riches until Jesus calls them home. The vows inspire me to reflect on my own marriage and remember that I promised not only love Mr. R when he is lovely and kind, but also in times of anger when neither of us is beautiful.
The reception, the decorations, the girls were all gorgeous...and Mr. R and I got to tear it up on the dance floor! (Oh and the wedding cake was amazing!)

Friday, May 22, 2009

It was a bad week for cars

If you read my post from Monday you already know our little Cabrio has been out of commission due intense rain, low lying exit ramps, and a giant puddle on county road 207. It stalled out in the middle of the road, got a tow home to our driveway which was also underwater, and has been starting up just fine since Tuesday. Still, I wasn't all that comfortable driving it to and from work in the land of puddles.

This wasn't a problem (since Mr. R works from home) and the Scion has been uneventfully ferrying me to and from work for the past three days until.... WE HAD A TIRE BLOWOUT ON THE WAY TO WALMART!

I know what you are thinking, serves you right for shopping at the evils of corporate America. And maybe so, but you can't beat their prices. $82.00 later we have a new tire, perfect tire alignment, and finally two cars back in working condition.

Let's hope this three day weekend is as automobile uneventful as possible.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


My driveway is flooded, my backyard could be called a pond, my pants are soaked, my hair is frizzed, and I am in much need of a nap.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Taboo, tea, rainy tuesday...

On my effort to watch less TV, blog more, and spend more quality time with the hubs and pups.. I spent tonight in my softest sweats playing taboo with Mr. R. It has rained for a solid 48 hours here in no-longer sunny Florida and running seemed like too much of an effort tonight. I'm no longer feeling sick, but the rain zaps all my energy.

I left school a bit early today to avoid the massive puddles and traffic on I-95. The pups were desperately in need of a walk, but the rain was showing no signs of letting up anytime soon. I threw on a hat, grabbed an umbrella and the leashes and the pups and I took off for an afternoon stroll in the pouring rain. We came home soaked, but I did manage to get them do their business. (My carpet is grateful!) I figured since they were soaked I would bathe them and while they put up a great fuss the entire time, they are currently prancing around the living room feeling pretty. I think the treats I bribed them with after might have something to do with the new attitude too.

Dinner tonight needed to be quick and effortless. After cleaning the kitchen, bathing the dogs, grabbing a quick shower myself, and grading a few quizzes...soup and sandwiches sounded fantastic. I seriously thank God for Costco at least twice a week. They have ready made soups that are tasty and low in ww points. Tonight we split crab and corn soup with oven broiled ham and cheese open faced croissant sandwiches. It took me a total of 5 minutes to prep and 7 minutes to cook. Yum!

In honor of my mini media fast Jeff and I played taboo. It turns out we are a great guessing team! 25,000 dollar pyramid here we come!

My tea has just come to a boil and my new Rachael Ray magazine begs to be pursued. Hopefully we might just see the sun tomorrow!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Friday, Saturday, Sunday... where does the weekend go?

My immune system failed me this week. I came down with the "crud" this week and my weekend mostly consisted of nyquil induced dreams, sweats, and hot showers. We did manage to squeeze in two movies and a dinner with friends. As I type this I realize my weekend wasn't so uneventful after all.

Friday: I left school at 2:oo feeling horrible. My nose was running, my head hurt, and as a result of not eating all day I was nauseous and a little dizzy. I came home, napped, popped a dayquil and three hours later felt almost human. Mr. R and I decided to have nachos and cherry coke for dinner. Actually, we decided to try out the new movie theatre. It was my turn to choose the movie and Ghost of girlfriends past made the cut. It's a cute movie, great for a date night.

Saturday: Took a nyquil after the movie and spent most of Saturday morning in a nyquil induced haze. Mr. R had a morning meeting with a few fellow republicans and I slept right through their arrival. I awoke to 5 people + Mr. R sitting in my dining room. I am sure they loved my morning hair. Saturday night we celebrated Jenn's 24th over margaritas and queso at Chili's. A fantastic night celebrating an amazing girl!

Sunday: Our friends Charlie and Courtney joined our church this weekend and Mr. R and I attended the early service to support them. We took in the afternoon showing of Star Trek. I have definitely had my fill of soda, popcorn, and movie nachos this weekend.
Good news! On the weight watchers front I am down 4.6 this week!

My knight in shining armor...

It's not often I play damsal in distress. Every once in a while I may need Mr. R to zip up my dress or fasten a bracelet, but for the most part I am pretty self reliant. My commute home today started in a deluge of rain and after exiting the interstate I found myself driving through a giant puddle. My car stalled out immediatly and I found myself stranded in the right lane of a major county road. Luckly a police man pushed me to the shoulder where I wait for Mr. R to come to my rescue.

We ended up sitting in my car and waiting for AAA to arrive. We talked for the enitre 60 minutes just catching up on our day, the plan for our week, and tossing out vacation destination ideas. The waiting was miserable and the rain refused to let up, but the time we had alone together was wonderful. No cell phones, tv, computers, or work to distract us.

Tonight should be rather uneventful. I am making Rachel Rays Philly Joes for dinner and plan to curl up with my newest used book store find. (I am loving Meg Cabot's Queen of Babble Series)

Stay Dry and let's pray the cabrio is back in working condition VERY SOON!!!!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Holy Fattening Batman!

Not really the best title, but that is how I felt when trying to total up my weight watchers points tonight. After a not so great day at school today I felt the need for a coffee pick me up on the way home. I stopped by the golden arches to pick up a large vanilla iced coffee. What can I say Starbucks is out of the way and Mickey D's is a heck of A LOT cheaper.

The woman in front of me ordered cinnamon melts with her coffee and the sheer scent made me crave some too. I broke to temptation and asked for a package of melts to go with my coffee. I figured how bad could a few mini melts be?

10 points!!!! That is almost half of my daily points for the day!

The saddest part is that I inhaled my snack so fast I can't even remember what those fattening lard and cinnamon covered bites tasted like.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day 2009!

This post is dedicated to the most amazing mom I know.
She just happens to be mine!
Love you mom!

Click to play this Smilebox greeting: Mother's Day 2009
Create your own greeting - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox greeting

Friday, May 8, 2009

I feel like I have become the weird girl.

You remember her right? The girl with the pigtail braids, in mismatched socks, buster brown loafers and the bad retainer. She used to sit behind you in fourth grade. You never invited her to eat lunch with you. Her lunch always smelled weird and it never had any good stiff like Little Debbies or snack packs. She didn't go to your birthday party although your mom made you go to hers. And her weird parents didn't even serve birthday cake! It was some kind of no sugar organic pudding crap! And this was before organic was cool. Sorry for the melodramatic post. I am just feeling left out and awkward. It reminds me of my chubby middle school days when I had more tummy than boobs.
This year I turned 27 and I am in between friends right now. I have single awesome friends who are having a blast partying like rock stars and dating up a storm. They have tales of fabulous nights out among the beautiful people. This of course is all happening while I am safely tucked into bed at 10pm. I also have beautiful mommy friends who plan play dates. They always have little ones in tow and plan their days around naps, feedings, and mommy and me classes. I feel like I am caught between two worlds right now and I would love to have a friend or two sitting in the USS awkward with me.


This week was a long one. I know all weeks have the same amount of time, but how come some feel SO much longer than others? The good news is I have the house to myself for a whole 48 ours. Mr. R is kind of a bed hog so I relish the times I get to claim a full half of our bed.

This video is courtesy of my friend Mia who can make always make me laugh. If you ever have the privilege of meeting her ask her about the time she gave birth to a bear. Trust me your life will not be complete without hearing that story.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Learning to sew!

Ever since home-ec class in junior high I have had a desire to learn to sew. In sixth grade I learned to make a pillow and in seventh I made a small tote bag to carry my gym clothes. I begged my mom to let me take sewing class in high school, but she thought AP English was the better elective choice. As usual she was right.

While AP English helped me in college and grad school, I have never learned to sew. I can fix a button and quick stitch an open seem, but that is the extent of my sewing expertise. I would love to be able to make the summer skirts I pay $60 for in J.Crew or the super cute kerchief/maxi dresses I see in Old Navy, American Eagle, and GAP.

I know this sounds incredibly dorky, but I am so excited to find fabric and pattern and buy thread. I also want to learn to monogram. Can you imagine the cute cardigans with my initials?!

I might just becoming a little sweat shop worker this summer locked away in my home office with only the hum of my old fashioned Singer to keep me company. If you have any advice on where to get a few lessons give me a shout!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Blessing in disguise?

Every night before I collapse of exhaustion I pray. Usually I pray for forgiveness, patience, and wisdom. Last night I prayed for understanding. I found out yesterday that I did not get hired for my typical summer job. It's fantastic summer money and in fact last summer it paid the down payment on our home. The letter I got telling me about my non-employable status rambled on about the economy, school budget, and lack of money to hire back summer teachers. I was so angry at first. Angry becuase I expected the job to be mine and also angry becuase I was greedily counting the money I planned to be making this summer.

I have no idea why I will not be working Marine Science camp this summer, but I can take solace in the fact that God in HIS infinite wisdom has decied a new plan for this June. I talked to Mr. Republican last night and he thinks I have been working too hard with no breaks for too long and that a summer of may do me some good.

I can't imagine how I will be spendigng this summer...part-time job? take new classes at the gym? reading fantastic books that I have been eyeing at the library? logging sunny hours pool side or volunteering at the hospital and red cross?

I am kind of nervous about having so much time all to myself. I can't imagine I will be bored, after all I could always work on the house! I am looking forward to naps, sleeping in, and more time with the hubs.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner...

And that is what we ate tonight. Chicken dinner I mean, after I took all of 10 minutes to write our weekly menu last night I discounted it completely and made tossed salad topped with chicken, mandarin oranges, almonds, wonton strips, and fancy dressing. By fancy I mean it cost more than $2 at Walmart. I bought it in the refrigerator section not the regular dressing aisle.

Instead of going to the gym we made an extended trip to Target tonight in search of Mother's Day gifts for my Momma and The Grand Lady (Mr. R's Mom). Momma is an avid reader and loves girlie beach reads. I choose two of my favorites for her. I devoured these over Christmas and Spring Break. They are trashy books, that will shock you with language, and do not diplay one lick of Christian values or character. They are however addiciting to read. I heart Janet Evonovich. The Grand Lady is a bit harder to shop for. She recently had knee surgery and has stopped her usual activities of gardening and water aerobics. She will be receiving a subscription to Real Simple Magazine. I really hope she'll like the purchase. It was between that and Rachael Ray's mag, and I must always remind myself that not everyone loves Ms. Ray as much as I do.

I must admit I am a little obsessed with a new blog a I came across. Its' written by a beautiful mother of three in Alabama. She is a strong Christian, wonderful caregiver, prayer warrior, and from what I read, a humble, yet fantastic Mom. When I grow up I hope to be a little (or maybe a lot) like her. Check out her blog here:

As Mr. R and I begin our 4th year of marriage, first year of home ownership, and future baby planning I can't help but imagine what I will be like in a few years with a few toddlers in tow. I hope I am as cool, calm, collected and prayerful as Darby.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Monday Menu...

I must admit that I will be doing very little actual cooking this week. Mr. R and I made the big trip to Costco this week and thanks to their AMAZING selection of ready to cook dinners I am a very happy wife with a stocked pantry, fridge, and a weeks worth of maintenance free dinners.

Sunday: NOLA shrimp and grits. I made a quick marinade for the shrimp (olive oil, red pepper flakes, white wine, and lime juice). I then sauteed them in the marinade and served over cheesy grits. A little high in ww points (9 total), but I had a few to spare tonight.

Monday: Ricotta ravioli from Costco with jarred tomato sauce, made by Newman's own, not me. I am sure a small salad will be served along with our pasta.

Tuesday: Asisan Salad coutesy of Costco tossed with grilled chicken strips. I also bought shrimp pot-stickers (sp?) to try. I might use these as an appetizer.

Wednesday: Veggie burgers, grilled, with Ceasar dressing and sunchips.

Thursday: Copy cat Cheesecake factory southwest salad. Romaine lettuce topped with blackbeans, corn, avacado, tomato, and BBQ grilled chicken. Mr. R is a refried bean lover, so they may make an apperance in this dinner too.

Friday: Crabcakes with mango salsa. (Both from Costco) Serving this with green salad.

Saturday is the big weigh-in. Let's hope I stay within points and remain faithful to my workout schedule.

Date Night!

I need to start by saying that I do realize Mr. R and I are young married who are childless and could have a date night every night because we are home along together. However, do to work schedules, meetings, and daily chores, we end up eating quick dinners most nights on our porch. The conversation is usually always about work and the house renovation. We try to plan a date night every two weeks where we leave all house talk, work talk, and most republican talk at home to focus on each other and do something "fun and exciting". I put this in quotes because fun and exciting to us, it usually not all that exciting.

Yesterday started off horrible and now our baby plans have taken a true backseat, but I digress. Saturday morning is weight watchers weigh in for me. I came home excited to tell Mr. R of my 4 pounds lost only to see him on all fours scrubbing the carpet! Sophie had eaten something last night (most likely poop) and had thrown up ALL over the house. Living room, office, our bed, and the hall! As most of you know Soph and Simon are the pre-children. We treat them like babies and we were scared to death. Sophie continued to throw up most of the afternoon while still begging for walks and treat. Do real, human children, act this strangely when sick too?

We finally got Sophster straightened out around 4 and headed to Jax for a pre Cinco de Mayo celebration. I got the mojito I had been wanting the try and it was wonderful. Mangoes and mojitos are a better combo than pb and j. We ate fantastic Mexican food until our heart were content and our bellies were a little more than full. And I think we have decided we are not ready for children. As cute as babies look and I am in LOVE with little girl clothes at the moment, we are just not financially or mentally ready right now. For those of you who are still question us as to when we are EVER going to be ready, I am thinking three years. Hopefully by then the house will be finished!
Hope you had a great Saturday too!