Saturday, May 29

i can hardly see straight...

Contrary to what the title of this post on a Friday night (or Saturday morning) at 5am might make you think, the reason why I can't see straight isn't from a fun night out on the town imbibing big kid beverages. I can't blame it on the a-a-a-a-a-alcohol babay. It's because it's 5am and I'm at third 12-hour shift in a row...omg. I'm on my break, and man, 5am - without fail - is my wall. I hit it hard every morning, and no amount of repititions of "only two hours left" can make my eyes open any wider. Maybe it's psychological and if I stop looking at clocks at work I won't know when 5am hits and I won't ram into that wall of lethargy. But I probably will. And considering my job relies a lot on looking at the clock for vital signs and baby isn't really an option to not look at it. Oh well. Don't get me wrong, work has been great this week! I got to work my night shifts on my normal floor with a great crew. It's been steady busy so the nights have gone by fairly quickly, I can't really complain! It's my own fault that I cheerily bounce out of bed during the day after maybe 5 hours of sleep, so sure that it won't be a problem come 5am...but it always is! Will I ever learn??? haha.

Well, I'm almost done with my shift which means I'm almost done with my work week which means I can almost enjoy Memorial Day weekend! Yay!!! We will probably do some really crazy exciting stuff like go to the dog park, go to the gym, and maybe go to church! Outlandish, I know ;)

But I think I am headed to Estes Park with a girlfriend Monday for some hiking and hanging out, so that should be lots of fun! Of course Estes is having both an Art Market with music/food in the park and an antiques and collectables show on Memorial Day (more crazy activities from my life for ya), so that should be entertaining at least!

TANGENT --> speaking of antique and arts shows, fun little fact about me: my grandmother buys Native American jewelry from artists on reservations and sells it out of her home, out of a shop for a while, and multiple times each year at shows just like the aforementioned arts/crafts or antiques/collectables shows. When I was 7 years old, I started helping her at these shows. I still help her every once in a while. It's a fun way to spend a day with my grandma, and it's a fanTAStic place to people watch! A lot of crazies show up at those things! Plus, my grandma pays me in *jewelry* - sterling silver and turquoise or opal or onyx or coral...what granddaughter could say no to that proposition?

Tangent aside, I apologize for my spelling if there are any errors (fun fact #2 - I placed second in our school spelling bee in the 5th grade. I'm a genius ;) ). Like I said, it's these computers don't have built in spell-check (sad generation we are, if the computer won't check it for me...I can't be bothered to read over my blog post for errors!).

Happy Memorial Day weekend!!!
Cheers to you and yours~

Wednesday, May 26

it's been a while

Hey y'all! Sorry I've been MIA...I haven't been doing too much noteworthy stuff lately. Kind of taking a break of home decorating stuff since I am waiting on my homebuyer's credit before I can really tackle the living room (PS - I've been waiting for it since NOVEMBER. November, people!!!! Ugh.) The dogs have been behaving themselves in the back yard - for now, anyway. I was doing super with working out, then took the weekend off. Today I am so sore from my arms work out yesterday, and I got my butt kicked by Mr. Trainer at the gym this morning! My legs are going to die tonight at work!!! 

I guess the biggest news is that I've started watching GLEE! Haha. I'm such a theatrical nut and I knew I should have been watching it since it started, but I avoid starting a new show because I get so addicted so easily to TV (It's sick!)! Yesterday I watched a few episodes, and they are so much fun! Borrowed Season 1 from Mandrew (thank you thank you thank you!) and am enjoying some more today :) 

Anyone else watch the Biggest Loser finale last night?!?! So awesome! My favorite part about Biggest Loser finales is the pride you see on the contestants' faces. Their smiles are just so beautiful to me! Love it :) Already excited for next season!

Pretty awesome how TV is the most exciting thing in my life, lol. 

Today I've just been playing wifey, doing laundry times a million, dishes, planning recipes, and going to the grocery store. What fun! It's not so bad interspersed with Glee episodes!!!

Happy Weds - I hope everyone has a good rest of your week!


Tuesday, May 18

hot & sour soup

Tonight I made a healthy delicious meal for my hubby and me :) Hot and Sour Soup with Tofu along with stir fry (brown rice, sauteed veggies, and shrimp). I had some friends request the homemade Hot and Sour Soup recipe from me, so here it is! Courtesy of Cooking Light magazine - April's issue. 

Hot and Sour Soup with Tofu
*Light in calories but has great protein and nutrients, so you can double the portion size and enjoy it as your meal (like I did tonight!)
*I bolded areas of the recipe that take a little time, just so you are prepared for it!

1 (14 oz) package firm water-packed tofu, drained
1 3/4 cups water (divided and used at different times)
1 (1/2 oz) package dried sliced shiitake mushroom caps
4 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 tbsp less-sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
2 tsp sugar
3/4 tsp white pepper
1 garlic clove, minced 
2 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
1/2 cup canned sliced bamboo shoots, drained and cut into julienne strips
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup thinly diagonally sliced green onion tops

1. Place tofu on several layers of paper towels. Cover tofu with several more layers of paper towels; top with a cast iron skillet or other heavy pan. Let stand 30 minutes. Discard paper towels. (The way I drain tofu is to just put it on a plate, place another plate on top of the block of tofu, and put something heavy like a cookbook or pot on top. I leave it for a few hours, and just pour the liquid off the plate when done draining.)

2. Bring 1 1/2 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan; remove from heat. Stir in mushrooms; let stand 30 minutes

3. Stir in broth and next 6 ingredients (through garlic); bring to a boil. 

4. Reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

5. Combine remaining 1/4 cup water and cornstarch in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth. 

6. Stir cornstarch mixture, tofu, and bamboo shoots into broth mixture; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minutes, stirring occasionally; remove form heat. 

7. Slowly drizzle egg into broth mixture (do not stir). Place pan over low heat; cook 1 minutes. Stir soup gently to combine. Sprinkle with green onions. 

*Makes 6 servings
*Serving size = 1 1/4 cup
*Per serving: 110 cals, 4.1g fat, 8.6g protiein, 10.1g carbs, .8g fiber, 445 mg sodium

Let me know if you make this tasty dinner! I hope you do and that you enjoy it!
MMMMMmmmmm :) Cheers!

kitchen decal!

Well, what do you know, I checked my mail today and received our decal for our kitchen! Hooray!!! What a fun way to start my week! Here is a pic of the lovely decal I put up :)

Here is our stove area before:

Gross, for some reason I just REALLY disliked that fruit bowl picture! That was the one thing about the kitchen I really didn't like. 

And after!
Our kitchen is just looking so much sunnier with the change of decor! I am loving it so much :) Still have some odds and ends to add on, but the major stuff in the kitchen is all done!

Okay, just thought I'd share :) Lovin' these Etsy purchases!!!

beautiful decal!

Okay, guys, I can hardly contain my excitement but I got my decal in the mail yesterday!!! My wonderful friend Amanda was in Denver last night staying with us, and she helped me put it up! Here are the final results of the wall!
Love it love it love it!!!!

It looks so amazing! So here is our before: 

And after:

Big difference! Now I just need to find the perfect comforter to match! I'm thinking white with a green pattern. I can't find the right green though. Hmmmm. 

In puppy news, we have had NAUGHTY puppies this week! We think mostly naughty Penny, but it's hard to tell who has destroyed what when we come home to a mess that was made while we were away. *sigh*

They turned on the outside water AGAIN. This is the third time. Tyler got a call from our maintenance guy saying, "Water is running from your  backyard into the street. When I peeked into your backyard I saw your dogs playing in water." Geez. So we finally went to Home Depot and got a cover for it. The only problem is it's made of destructible material, so I'm guessing they eat it.We're lucky that our HOA pays our water bill because who knows how much water they've wasted in their shenanigans!

But worse than the water, Penny went to TOWN on our tree. Stripping the bark off of all that she could reach. Poor, poor tree. This is the damage, and the black stuff is tree tar that is supposed to prevent disease while the tree heals:
Top half. 
Bottom half. 
So then, we fenced the tree off, thinking this would give the tree time/space away from puppies to heal...

But no, we came home to find Penny had dug under the fence and scratched on top of the tar! Ugh. So frustrating! These puppies sure can try my patience! But at the end of the day, I still love them to pieces, despite the fact that I cannot figure out how to keep Penny from killing that poor tree!

In work out/diet update, things are going really well! I have been working out every day, really trying to push what I think are my limits. I've been eating sooo much better, too! Loaded up on another week of fresh fruits/veggies for the meals I have planned for this week! Last night I made a panko encrusted cod with sauteed zuchinni and homemade tarter sauce - for a total of 245 cals/serving! Courtesy of Cooking Light magazine - which I have been loving lately!
Happy Tuesday, ya'll, hope it's going well!
Cheers :)

Thursday, May 13

puppies: i feel like i have toddlers

Not that I want kids ANY time soon, but last night was a testimony to my belief that having the two puppies that I have give you a little bit of an idea of what having babies of the human variety is like! 
A shot of the two innocent darlings in action:)

So, let me chronicle last night for you. You tell me how much this sounds like I'm raising human toddlers, not little doggies. For bedtime, we like to have a routine in place to get them to calm down and realize they will have to go to bed soon. Before heading upstairs, I offer them the opportunity to go outside and potty. Usually, one of the two scampers off to his/her half of the yard (yes, they have an invisible line of pee property drawn, and what do you know - Penny's "half" is bigger) and does his/her business. The other one sits by the door staring at me, beckoning for me to let him/her in. 

After that, we go upstairs and brush teeth. Tyler and I each take one dog and get those chompers shining pearly white. They LOVE this. Mostly because they love to do anything that the other one is doing. Penny used to not be a big fan of  brushing her teeth, but once we got Gryffin...if HE was getting HIS teeth brushed, then OF COURSE she wanted HER teeth brushed. 

After that, mom and dad get ready for bed while they run around getting their last few nips and tackles out of the way. Then we take them downstairs for one more potty - every night in hopes that they will sleep ALL the way through the night, not just til 5am. At this point, they know it's kind of "last call," so they both dutifully trot and gallop (Penny and Gryffin's preferred styles of walking, respectively) to their sides of the yard and get their business done. 

They then come inside and race upstairs - everything is a competition between those two..."sibling rivalry" very much exists in this house. Gryffin immediately puts himself to bed, either on his bed or Penny's bed, while Penny sits like a coiled spring ready to pop while she waits for me to invite her on the bed. Once Penny soars up on the bed (she literally flies like a reindeer, nothing but air), Gryffy pulls himself up to the side of the bed and waits for me to give him a little boost on to the bed. While he is capable of making it onto the bed, he only does it like 1 out of 10 tries...let's just say he doesn't have the same sense of grace with ease Penny has. One of them always decides to start a tussle with the other, but they do seem to fairly alternate in playing this role of the instigator or "shit-starter" as we lovingly refer to them. So, Tyler and I each take a pup and kind of force-cuddle them until they calm down and forget about fighting. Penny usually darts under the blankets and curls up at our feet, while Gryffy prefers to stay up between our heads, just in case there is ANY chance to kiss one of us on the mouth. He LOVES kissing. And of course I mean kissing of the French variety, if he has any choice in the matter. 

We allow them to snuggle for 10 - 20 minutes while Tyler and I wind down ourselves and chat about the day and the days to come, our distant futures, and the dreams they hold. Eventually, I start to slur my words or say something incoherent, and that means it's time to send the dogs to bed because I'm about to pass out. We kiss their foreheads, tell them "time to go night night," and watch as they hop off of our bed and onto their own on the floor. 

Peace and quiet ensues :)


We are sleeping with the window open and they hear a sound. Like a car. Or a neighbor outside. Or another dog. Then our fierce guard dogs perk right up in defense mode and make a little cacophonous chorus of barks, grumbles, yelps, and growls. We shut the window, and repeat the send-off to bed. Kissing of the foreheads and saying "time to go night night."



One of them needs to go potty or throws up. Penny is GUARANTEED to get up sometime between 3 and 5 am. Gryffin is never the one to wake up, he has an iron bladder. It starts by me hearing the soft padding of her feet pacing around the room. Then she shakes her head. Her ears flop. Then she shakes her head again. And her ears flop and flap back and forth against her head. Have you seen this dog's ears?
Yeah, they are noisy!
(I'll never forget my brother's reaction to receiving this picture in a text message...he responded, "Holy Ears!") haha. 

After the head shaking she starts a low cry, almost a pony whinny, if such a thing exists. So I get out of bed and hear "thump thump" as Gryffin gets excited and his tail beats against his crate. That guy gets excited about everything! Early morning potty break commences. 

After said potty break, Gryffy goes back to bed while Penny reverts to aforementioned spring position, praying for another cuddle opportunity. Sometimes we let her up (if it's after 5am), sometimes we don't (like this morning's 3am potty break).

Some mornings, after or instead of the potty break, one of their stomachs make a churning sound. Yup, gonna throw up. Penny does this every few weeks, we think it's just in her anatomy. She throws up and is then as happy as can be. Gryffin throws up chunks of toys he has ingested. Like this morning. After the 3am potty break, I heard the churning sound at 5am. I opened Gryffin's crate to find some questionable liquids, foam, and a hot pink piece of plastic frisbee. *sigh* He was thrilled to see me and proceeded the make-out attempt. Luckily, I escaped. So, we cleaned up the mess, cleaned up Gryffin, and then let them snuggle in bed since Gryffin now had a wet bed from being cleaned. 

Penny immediately dove under the covers, turned a few circles, and plopped down. She's learned that if she causes problems, she gets kicked off, so she just stays quiet and still. Gryffin, on the other hand, takes the 5am bed invite as the perfect time to groom himself for the day. After 5 minutes of licking and scratching he quiets down and dozes off. Not without stiff-arming me in the face or back a few times. 

An hour later, Tyler gets up for school

By 8:15, the dogs have decided it's time to get up. They are legit biologically set to get up between 8 and 8:15 in the morning! They never wake me up before, and they never sleep past 8:15. haha.

That post ended up being obscenely long, I just find it funny how I feel like such a parent to my little mongrels. They're prepping us for the lack-of-sleep part of parenthood :) 

Hope you are having a wonderful week! Do you have any hilarious puppy/dog stories that make you feel like a parent? Share, if you do!


Friday, May 7

fill in the blank friday - books books books!

Another edition of Fill in the Blank Friday! Brought to you by Lauren :)  This week it's all about books! I LOVE reading, so this is great!

1.  My favorite book growing up was the Babysitter's Little Sister series! I read a few of the Babysitter's Club books, but I was mostly into this spin-off series about the little sister and her mischief. I also read EVERY Sweet Valley Twins book! Loved them. And also Nancy Drew! Both newer and original mysteries, these books were/are so much fun!

2.  The funniest book I've ever read was  the Shopaholic series! Becky Bloomwood is such an outrageous character - she sometimes makes me want to pull my hair out - but her life's mishaps and situations she gets herself into make me laugh and laugh. Also, the Devil Wears Prada - soooooo funny. Is it bad that I get delirious with laughter at other peoples misfortune and crazy life events?

3.  The one book that has truly changed my life is  hmmm...aside from the Harry Potter series creating a complete NERD out of me?!? lol. I would say Eat, Pray, Love has really inspired me to make sure I take that time for me so that I am never in a place where I don't know myself or my wants/needs. It also totally makes me want to travel, and it reminds me of the life experience you can get from traveling to a foreign place a little out of your element. 
4.  If you're looking for a real "tear jerker" you should probably read Where the Red Fern Grows!!! I remember reading that in 6th grade and just crying and crying.

5.  If I could meet any author living or dead I would want to meet   Dan Brown. That guy's crazy! I just want to know where he gets his inspiration and ideas and whether he's normal or a pretty kooky guy.

6.  The next book on my "to read" list is   I have tons! The Help. The Potato Peel Society. Sarah's Key. Also some classics that I haven't gotten around to reading yet. And Harry Potter 7 again - just because I love it.

7.  If I was snowed into  remote cabin in the woods and could only choose three books to bring with me I'd bring   The Bible. The Help. Harry Potter series (I'm going to pretend they exist in one REALLY REALLY large volume. lol). 

That concludes this week's edition! I am spending some relaxing time with my family and friends this weekend. I got to sleep 12 hours last night!!! Yessss. Off to go to Pier One to see what treasures I can find for my decorating goals! Then gym and a visit to baby Cash! It's going to be a wonderful day!

Happy Friday and happy weekend to you all!

Wednesday, May 5

change is amazing

Okay, so this post is all about updates! Cinco de Mayo brought the birth of a new little ray of sunshine - Cash! Here is the beautiful family during recovery. They all did so very well!

Little Cash sleeps so soundly.

Such a proud "aunt" - He sure made me smile :) Perfect in every way! I can't wait to go visit him tomorrow.

Okay so here is the start of my room project! I painted the wall Bright Parrot - and we love it! It's going to look SO rad with the tree branch decal!!!

And going along with our new green and white room colors, I built us new dressers! Got them at Wal-Mart, and hours and many hand blisters later, voila! They looks so good! It's going to be all crisp and symmetrical and I so can't wait!

I am working on the kitchen too, and I have decided on citrus theme of mostly lemon and orange. I bought these super cute vases and filled them with fake fruit. LOVE EM.

And lastly, the mongrels wanted to say HELLO to blogland! :)

Happy Cinco de Mayo!!!


Tuesday, May 4

little blessing on the horizon

Hello! So this is going to be short and sweet - just asking for prayers as tomorrow my best friend in the whole world is having her baby! We have been friends since kindergarten, and I am beyond thrilled for her and her husband! My shift at work got canceled tonight - and for once I am thrilled because it means I can go to Fort Collins early in the am for her delivery! She has a scheduled c-section (naughty Cash is already stubborn - won't leave from breech!), so I am just hoping everything goes so smoothly for her. Lots of love and good vibes to Syd and Brad!!! I cannot wait to meet Cash tomorrow!!!

Cheers :)

Saturday, May 1

let's face it

Overall, this week wasn't exactly my week! 

I have been so stumbly, bumbly, clumsy, and out of it that I kept thinking SURELY the next day my head would get screwed back on straight! But nope, nope. Not the case. For example, Weds night at work, I spilled my mocha all over a patient chart. Awesome. As in, STACKS of paper ruined with coffee. Most of it was reprintable, but it was still a mess and I felt like an idiot! I know these things happen, but this is the THIRD time I have done that at work! Oops... no more open containers at work for me! 

Next example, last night at work, I was in the nursery chatting with some of my coworkers about this really awkward situation that happened a while back. I was telling this story about how a dad was really impressed by his baby's boy parts. He kept saying, "He takes after his dad! Look how huge his balls are!" "I see the resemblance, he's got balls like his daddy!" etc. All this while I was bathing the baby. AWKWARD. So, as I am telling this story, I realize there are parents in the nursery, and the dad was looking at me with a quizzical expression. Damn. Guess I said "balls" too loud. Embarrassing. So I made a story about an awkward situation into an even more awkward story in the end. Just great. 

Third example of me being a space-case. I decided a few minutes ago to finally upload all my pictures from the last month onto my computer. Pictures of random nights/days out with my friends, pictures of my puppies, pictures of my anniversary date night with Tyler... What do I do? I select them all to transfer and then D.E.L.E.T.E. them. Yep. All of them. Just awesome. *sigh*

So there's my venting sesh for you, subject = my being an idiot this week!

In other news, I've been working really hard at the gym! Need to step it up in what I've been eating. I haven't been making as many home-cooked meals lately, which leads to the inevitable quesadilla or chicken nuggets or mac 'n cheese. So I need to do better about that. But with all my creative energy going into decorating our house now, I don't feel like cooking really! Anyone want to be our free chef who provides organic and fabulous meals? Anyone? Bueller? 

Speaking of decorating though, we bought our wall decal!!! SO excited! If you don't know what I'm talking about, take a peek at this post from a few days ago. I've decided to paint the space behind my bed a spring green, and we ordered the decal in white with dark green birds. And I'm getting a new duvet/sham set (shhhh, don't tell Tyler...and Tyler, if you're reading this, then...crap) to match. 

The other crafty thing I did was make shadowboxes for Penny and Gryffin! I already have made one shadowbox - for our wedding - before. Here is a pic.
I love it so much! It has our save-the-date, bridal shower invite, bachelorette party invite, wedding invitation, wedding program, wedding announcement from the newspaper, stamps we used on our save-the-dates, and a ribbon from what my bridesmaids had tied around their waist at the wedding. Plus a few cute little trinkets we got at our wedding (Erin - if I'm not mistaken, didn't you give us that sweet little silver key?) So anyway, this is proudly displayed by our front door and I just love it. This is a much less time/money-consuming project than scrapbooking, but it is essentially a hanging scrapbook page!

And here are the puppy shadowboxes!

My sweet little Penny with her tiny first collar. 
And my little lovey Gryffin with his favorite toy!

I think they look pretty darn cute side-by-side! And you can't really tell from the pictures, but the paw prints and inset pictures and words are at a different dimension than the background photo. I used these padded sticky things you're supposed to use to make things pop out into 3D or whatever. And the letters are puffy and 3D, too. So I'm really proud of my little creations, and now I just need to decide where to hang them!

So now I am off to prime that area behind our bed so hopefully I can paint it green tomorrow! Crossing my fingers for no silly painting incidents, seeing as how my head has been a little out of sorts!!! 

Cheers :)