Monday, November 10, 2014

Life Updates: November Edition

It's weird that this place is slowly becoming 'home'.


But then we get assaulted by fog in the morning, and the only places we eat are fried chicken joints, I remember that this place is unapologetically my temporary home.


Here's just a few things we've done this past month. *and side note: HOLY HANNAH! HOW IS IT NOVEMBER ALREADY?!?! WHEN DID THIS HAPPEN?


+Blanket scarves are SO in...the blogging world. Your hubby just thinks you are crazy that you think wrapping a plaid blanket around you is cute.


What I see:
So cute. So trendy. Must. Have.



What the hubby sees:
Are you seriously wrapping yourself in a blanket?!?!



+We are too old for Halloween. We need kidlets to fully enjoy it.


+Our Halloween night consisted of Chinese takeout and What Lies Beneath. #oldschool


+Uncle Lou's sweet and spicy love...Do not miss this. Even if you are scared of sketchy neighborhoods. You'll be rewarded.



+I crave fried pickles every time we go out to eat. Gus' are still my favorite so far.


+I AM SO ready for Christmas break. 3 weeks of vacation? Yes. Please!


+Brand new movie theaters are the best! But movies are expensive in MS. We had to resort to a matinee--the horror!


+GO watch Interstellar. Right. Now. This is one of the best films that I've ever seen. It's so different. It's refreshing. It makes you think. Also, I laughed, I cried, and I nearly peed myself. It's that good.  #spacetravel



+T Mobile doesn't suck. It's nice to not have to worry about data usage...#verizonhadmescared


+Happy Fall Ya'll (I am trying to embrace my surroundings)
Rustic, Tree Slice Wall Hanger, Tree Slice Art, State Art, Welcome Y'all
Buy it here.


+We got called to be family historian consultants. I am already sick of hearing my own voice. And it's only been a week. Also, Carlos volunteered us to speak on Sunday. #thanksbutnothanks


+"Outside of Utah wards" are so different. I literally feel like there's a church activity EVERY DAY. Maybe that's because we actually go to them.


+Working at home rocks. You should try it sometime.


+I miss having a Hobby Lobby 30 seconds away from me. I make due by at least an 1 hour of Etsy a week.


+Downtown Memphis has it's charm. But WHATABOUT the Trolleys?!?! They are still down...



+Sorry Thanksgiving, but I NEED Christmas d├ęcor to go up NOW.


+ALL the baked goods.


+Yes, I got myself a donut pan. It was something I convinced myself that I absolutely, would-die-if-I-didn't-have-it. I'm still not convinced though. There's something about frying a piece of dough that speaks to me. #fatkidprobs


+Carlos survived his second week of midterms. #herestofinals


+We bought Calvin and Hobbes their very own dog-friendly Thanksgiving dinner. Yeah, we are those kind of dog people.





+Sunsets here are gorg.


I'm counting down the days/hours/minutes/seconds until Christmas. AAAHHH can't wait!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

October: Latest Happenings

Phew! What a crazy couple of months!


We have been officially living in the South for over a month, and sometimes, it still doesn't feel real. There's been lots of growing pains, new cuisines tried, and experiences that I'll never forget.


So what's been up?


+It was my birthday. Hello being old. AND helllloooo to a new (and first) MK purse



+We went to Nashville. LOVE that city, even though I don't particularly fancy country music (BUT I DO fancy Blake Shelton...)


+Fall TV started up. Need I say more? We're obsessed with new shows (Gotham, Flash, The Voice...etc).


+We got called to be "Family History Consultants"...#atleastwearen'tinnursery


+Ran my second 5K 2 min faster than my first. Next goal..under 30 min. #yeahi'mfat


+Calvin, Hobbes & Carlos ran their first 5k!


+I'm trying to convince hubby to sign up for a half marathon. It can't be all that bad? #germantownhalfmarathon2015


+Conference weekend happened. #LDSconf I feel so refreshed and rejuvenated.
17523


+Made the switch to T Mobile. Sorry Verizon, you sucked. Stayed with the iPhone 5c. NOT going to be paying a grand for the iPhone Plus. #toopoor


+Waiting and hoping for fall weather. It's still 80 degrees up in here, and me no likey.


+Just made the BEST ever chicken tacos. GET IN MY BELLY!!!


+Seriously contemplating fabric wall paper for the apartment. Am I crazy?


I am SOOOO excited for this next couple of months. #theholidaysarestarting We've got tons on our plate, and it's going to be a wild ride!



Monday, September 22, 2014

That One Time...

One time, a boy fell in love with a girl. They lived a perfectly normal existence in the comfort of the girl's hometown for almost two years.
 
Boy got into school. Boy is so smart, he gets into his dream school (Funny fact, admissions offered him an interview, but the director told him that there was a 1% chance he'd get in. Annnnd, he defied odds, and blew away the admissions council and got in!). Guess where the Grandelas are going?
 
Memphis, Tennessee.

 
Enter my life.
 
It's been just over a month since we've moved from comfortable, sleepy draper, to crazy, loving Memphis. And here's the best part, we don't even LIVE in Memphis! Technically, we live in Horn Lake, MS. It's been a whirlwind of a month, and I just want to document a little piece of the craziness that's been going on in our lives.
 
Insanity
This whole move has been insane. Insane because I've never lived outside of Utah. Insane because we don't have family nearby. Insane because we are truly on our own. Insane because it's a 23 hour trip from Utah (if you drive). My fam bam was able to take the road trip with us (all 5 of us, including two cars, a Uhaul, and 2 dogs in tow).


Insane because Elan came home while I was in TN. Insane because I was able to procure the funds to actually go back home to Utah and see my family for a little bit! (I didn't get to see my lil sis because she's in Jerusalem!)


We've been truly blessed here. Sometimes I can't even believe how much Heavenly Father loves us. I just don't get it!


Since I LOVE bullet point lists so much, I thought I'd give you a glimpse of the good, the bad, and the ugggly.

 
 
 
Things I Hate About Memphis
  • Verizon service absolutely sucks
  • The drivers are 100% certifiably CRAZY
  • The humidity
  • The bugs (they cause a ruckus at night!)
  • The apartment complex (we get rando notes in the middle of the night from management, and the gym 6 different remotes for their tvs--only ONE works #getittogether)
  • Narrow roads (I blew up a tire because I got too close to a curb)
  • The stake center is 45 min away (yeah, yeah #utahmormon)
  • The high prices to fly outta this place!
  • The neighbors above us
 
Things I'm On the Fence When It Comes to Memphis
  • Aldi's (it is the ghetto version of Wally World)
  • BBQ spaghetti (good? bad? I still can't decide)
 

Things I Kind-of-Sort-of-Like About Memphis
  • Our ward (our ward is phenomenal)
  • New friends (we've got a great group of 3 couples that are rockin')
  • BBQ (in this order: Rendezvous, Memphis BBQ Company, BBQ Shop, Central)
  • Shelby Park
  • Registering your car is as simple as having a Driver's license, proof of residency, and the title of the car
  • Gas is CHEAP!
  • T mobile rocks here--and t mobile is CHEAP!
  • They have a "Life is Good" store
  • Temp agencies rock
  • Our apt is HUGE (and we are paying about $30 more than we did in Draper--SCORE!)
 So here's to living in Memphis (and that the hubby graduates from optometry school!). While it's not my dream city (or my little Orem), I'd like to say I'm growing and learning everyday from this amazing experience.


 
 

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Ooey Gooey Cupcakes of WONDER AKA Brownie Batter Chocolate Cupcakes

Wow. I'm a girl that isn't in love with all things chocolate. Sure, I love anything chocolate-dipped, but I don't go crazy for uber chocolate.



Let's have some cupcakes shall we?



These cupcakes are a little labor intensive, but extremely delicious. Like so good, I wanted to eat them all in one sitting, and the hubby made me take them to our home teachers so we would get rid of them. Sadface.




Check the inspiration here.



BROWNIE BATTER
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup fat-free sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup milk
1 (18.25 oz) box devil’s food cake mix (I used the cheapo, Western Family brand)

Mix it all up (mix with mixer for about 2 min) {how many times can I use mixer in a sentence?}
Freeze in bowl overnight. (you can also be an overachiever and make small scoops and store onto baking sheet--assuming you have a big enough freezer for that)




CUPCAKES
1 (18.25 oz) box devil’s food cake mix (I used the cheapo, Western Family brand)
1 (3.9 oz) pkg  instant chocolate fudge pudding mix (I used the cheapo, Western Family brand)
1 cup sour cream
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup milk
2 cups mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Line cupcake pans with liners. In large bowl, combine all ingredients (except for chocolate chips), mix for 2 min. Then mix in chocolate chips. Then drop batter into cupcake liners (fill about 2/3 full). Then plop in brownie batter from the bowl you froze overnight {try not to eat it all} 

Bake for 22-30 min. Let cool. 

I swear, it didn't need any frosting at all. 



In this recipe, there was a frosting...it didn't tickle my fancy. It might tickle yours...
For the Frosting
5 sticks butter, softened
8 oz powdered sugar
1.5 cups unsweetened cocoa powder (Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa)
a pinch of table salt
1.5 cups light corn syrup
2 tsp vanilla extract
16 oz milk chocolate chips

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Obsessed with Monograms

I'm totally obsessed with monograms. I mean, how cool and preppy do they make everything look? I went a little crazy and made some of these, just for inspiration. 

What do you think about monograms? Overrated? 
This is super professional. 

I feel like this could be on a wine label. 

A little grungy/professional?

This one reminds me of preppy football players, like the ones in the 1950s. 

Clean, beautiful. 

This looks like a firm. 

This should go on a clean pressed oxford shirt. 

Appropriate for a resume. 

A little over the top. 

Beautiful. But do you think this counts as a monogram?

This one looks like it's Neltje plus Granny. 

Sooo preppy. 



One of my faves. 

What a beaut. 

Want to make your own? Just go here
Enjoy.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Caramel Corn That Makes You Go CRAAAAZY

I love this caramel corn so much, I ate a whole bowl of it yesterday, and I didn't even realize it. This is so good and so easy. The hardest part?

Having to wait for it to cool down.

This recipe is awesome because you become a domestic goddess, you are making your own caramel. Read that again, You. Are. Making. Your. Own. Caramel. Enough said.

Bubbly, yummy caramel. Easy peasy 

The beautiful process

Golden caramel corn

Beautiful caramel getting ready to cover popcorn. Yummmmm



Baked Caramel Corn: 
  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup (light)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 6 quarts popped popcorn (24 cups)

Pop your popcorn and set it aside.
Preheat oven at 250' F
Directions: 
In a saucepan on the stove top, carefully melt butter so it does not burn. After butter is melted add brown sugar, corn syrup, salt.
Bring to a boil stirring constantly. Let boil without stirring for 5 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in baking soda.

Pour over popcorn, already popped and in a pan.

Bake at 250 F for 45 min, stirring every 15minutes.

Remove from pan & break apart immediately.
Cool on parchment paper.
Original recipe here

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Fool Proof Bread Recipe (I GUARANTEE IT)

Making bread is something I've always wanted to be pro at. I mean, how cool do you sound if you say "Oh yeah, I make my own bread." Which basically translates into "I'm FREAKING Martha Stewart, don't mess, k?"
MMMM CARBY

Last year, Hubby bought me my very own bread maker, because I pretty much thought that in order to be a good wife, I needed to know how to make bread. There were a lot of highs and lows when making bread. I mean, it's such an investment--3 HOURS. And if it doesn't turn out, well, sorry. You just wasted 3 hours of your life...waiting.

What a BEAUT
So, I present to you, a fool proof version of white bread. Trust me guys, this one's tried and tested. I made one Sunday night, and yesterday night--both with fantastic results. The bread is SO good, that it's hard to just not eat it with honey and butter. We made sandwiches with this bread. I HIGHLY recommend purchasing a bread cutter, or you end up with squished bread (#yeahme).


Fool Proof White Bread Recipe 
1 cup warm water
2 Tablespoons white sugar
1 package (.25 oz) yeast
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt

Put in bread maker. (It works well in express settings too!) Press start.

Enjoy.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

When the Going Gets Tough...Make 10 MINUTE CINNAMON ROLL PANCAKES

Lately, I've been having a rough time. It's kind of hard to describe. Nothing's wrong per say, but I just feel in a funk.

Yesterday, I came home, and absolutely didn't want to do anything but bake and watch Heroes (man I obsessed with that show).





I saw this recipe from Recipe Girl for these gooey, ooooooey, amazing pancakes. Once I saw them, I KNEW I had to make them.

However, I only had about 20 min before the hubbs came back. Yes, I wanted to eat them before he came home (sometimes I'm selfish like that).

I scurried around the kitchen, and made some dang good pancakes that only took about 10 minutes. Which, when you are in a pinch, it's perfect! The recipe was halved, since I was the only one eating, and it can easily be doubled for two.

10 Minute Cinnamon Roll Pancakes (for 1)

Cinnamon Filling:

  • 2 Tablespoons butter (melted) 
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 Tablespoon ground cinnamon 
Cream Cheese Glaze: 
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 oz of cream cheese (room temp) 
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pancakes: 
  • Krusteaz pancake mix (just add water). Yes, I cheated, and it was soooo good. 
Directions: 

For cinnamon filling: 
Stir together the brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter. Mix until smooth. Scoop filling into small zip baggie. 

For glaze: 
Heat up the butter until it is melted. Whisk in the cream cheese until smooth. Then mix powdered sugar and add in vanilla extract. Set aside. 

Cook the Pancakes: 
Heat a large skillet over medium heat and spray with nonstick spray. Use a 1/3 cup to measure pancake batter to the pan. Use the bottom of the scoop to spread the pancake batter on the pan. 

Then snip the corner of the cinnamon filling bag and squeeze the filling into the open corner. Once the pancake begins to form bubbles, add the filling. (It doesn't have to be in a fancy swirl!) Cook the pancake for 2-3 min. Then gently flip over and cook for another 2-3 min. 

Serve pancakes topped with cream cheese glaze. 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

An an Effort to Expand My Horizons

In an effort to become cool, I've been taking coding classes, take a look at what I can do!

Code It Forward



#lovecoding
#codemaniac

Friday, January 24, 2014

P'nut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Barz (So fast to make & so fast to disappear)

OMG guys.

So right now, I've been doing the Atkin's diet. It's been extremely successful, and the pounds are dropping. :) !!!!

Even my sweet tooth has gotten relatively calm--which is amazing.

However, work was having a bbq today--and they asked for treats...my philosophy in life is to MAKE all treats that I take to functions (not to poop out and just buy a pack of cookies--where's the fun in that?). My reasoning is that if I have a good arsenal of treats by the time my kiddos go to school--I can be that awesome mom that has the BEST treats. Silly, I know. I have found many delicious recipes, at the expense of mine and Carlos' waistline :)

These things were SO EASY to make. I made them after a 10 hour day of work, 3 hours of class, a parking ticket, and working out! So don't say you can't do it!

It only took ONE bowl to mix all of the goodness together. Minimal dishes? Sign me up. 


 Mmmm.  A lovely sugar coated measuring spoon.


My disaster of a kitchen.


And yes, that's a container of DIET Mt. Dew. It often is the only thing that keeps me going. (also Pandora playing Crazy Love station--nothing like Michael Buble to serenade you in the ol' kitchen)


Ready to go in the oven!


Hellllllllo oooey gooey deliviousness.
Can you believe I didn't eat a whole bar? Or a whole sheet of em?
Honest to goodness. All I did was savor a tiny bite--and I even spit it out (I know it's crazy).

I took these to work...and there was nothing left. I didn't even get to sneak one...which is probably good. They were a hit!


Here's the recipe. 
Modified from here.

Makes 1 9 X 18 pan and a small 8 X 8 pan *so a lot!

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup butter, melted (2 sticks)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter (like Jif)
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 pinch salt
  • 6 squares of melting chocolate (3 for topping, 3 crushed) 
  • 1 cup chocolate chips  


Directions: 
1. Heat up oven to 350 F. Spray both pans good with cooking spray (so they don't stick) 

2. Melt the butter in a big bowl. Add the sugar (brown and white), vanilla, peanut butter, baking soda, salt, and eggs. Then add the chocolate chips and the chunks of melting chocolate. THEN add the flour. 

3. Bake for 18-20 min. 

4. Let the bars cool for at least 30 min. (This is the hardest part!!!) 

5. Melt 3 squares of melting chocolate and drizzle on top of the bars. Wait 20 min to cool. 

6. Slice and serve! 



Monday, January 13, 2014

Sunday, January 12, 2014

That One Time Hulu Sucked...and the Bachelor Came on a Week Later

Hulu has been good to us...

We've been able to skate by with just Hulu and Netflix.

HOWEVER...
just as El Bachelor aired, ABC switched up their contract dealio, and people with HuluPlus gotta wait ONE WHOLE week to watch it!

I know, first world problems...

However, one friend told me about Aereo...

It's $8/month and you can record live tv. You read that right!

Take a look, you'll be glad you did!

Check it here: www.aereo.com/




#firstworldproblems
#loveit

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

2014 Resolutions...or Life Changes If You Will

Happy New Year!

What a whirlwind year it's been.

Good bye 2013, and hello 2014.

As the new year is ushered in, I've been contemplating the resolutions goals lifestyle changes? that I've been wanting to make. Of course I want to lose weight, I want to be smarter, I want to be more accomplished--I'm sure everyone does!

Here are my concrete goals that I've made (and stuck with for the past 7 6 days (New Year's day counts as a holiday--and not a time to start resolutions)


Physical: 

  • Drink 8 glasses of water a day. 
  • Do two weeks of the Atkin's Diet
  • Gym 3x a week with the hubbs
  • 1 hour long daily walks with Hobbes
Spiritual: 
  • Start and complete PMG by the end of the year (by myself) 
  • Read the whole BOM by the end of the year (by myself) 
  • Read manuals before class
  • Comment at least once in Relief Society/Sunday School
Hobby: 
  • Crochet a scarf before the end of February 
  • Start taking classes to get my black belt in Ju Jitsu
  • Post on this here blog at least once a week
Mental: 
  •  Graduate 
Marriagical: 
  • Be a better wife by uplifting Carlos 

Ready, set, GO! 

*I"ll be following up each month to see how I'm doing!