Thursday, June 30, 2011

The First Four Years

Dear David,

I can't believe that it has been four years since the day we got married. I still remember the day very clearly because it was one of the best days of my life. I got a great night's sleep, ate breakfast at Dairy Queen, got my hair done, and started getting ready to walk down the aisle. I loved sharing our special day with all of our friends and family.

Even though our wedding day was wonderful, I think that the past four years have been even more wonderful. It amazes me to see how much I still love you after waking up with you day after day. This year is the first year that we have lived under the same roof every single night. Seeing you every day is wonderful and I won't take it for granted.

Some of my favorite memories from the past year include how much you helped me while I was studying for the bar, our trip to Puerto Vallarta, enjoying the fall in our new house, our ski trip, holidays with our families, hunkering down during the big snowstorm, and simply living each and every day together.

Thank you for being so kind to me and listening to me. Thank you for being the kind of husband to whom I feel I can say anything without your judging me. Thank you for teaching me to be more patient and how to forgive and forget. You challenge me and make me a better person daily. Thank you for being so supportive when I broke down before the bar, when I graduated from law school, and when I started my first job. Thank you for these wonderful four years!

Love,
Abbie

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Our weekend

We had a great weekend this past weekend. On Friday evening, David's brother came to our house (my brother was already there!) for the weekend. We always have a great time with our brothers when they visit for a weekend. We don't get to see them that often (they are busy college kids and we don't really live very close to either of them), so our time with them is truly precious. I can't think of many times when we have had a bad time with them. We are lucky that they get along!

On Friday evening we stayed at home, ate homemade nachos, and visited. On Saturday morning the guys went to play golf and I went to yoga and ran some errands. On Saturday evening, we went to eat at Jazz, a Louisiana-themed restaurant. We got to sit outside all evening and enjoy the weather---one of my very favorite things to do in the summer Everything was so delicious. I enjoyed fried oysters, dirty rice, gumbo, and hush puppies. Yum! Some pics:

The brothers and sister---please ignore my rootsMy friend Jancin and I


The siblings-prom style

When we got home on Saturday evening, we ate too much ice cream. On Sunday morning I went to yoga again and we met David's sister and her family for lunch. After that, we went bar stool shopping (found some great ones at Target!) and enjoyed the rest of the day on Sunday.

I felt like my weekend was long and relaxing, which I needed. How was your weekend?

Monday, June 27, 2011

Summer supper

Now that the weather is so hot, I have less of an appetite for hearty foods. Last night I decided to try Pioneer Woman's Summer Stir-Fry. I added couscous to make the dish a bit more hearty while still maintaining its light quality.

I also made a summer Greek-inspired salad. I took a lettuce Spring Mix, olives, cucumber, and red onion and added a little dressing made of sugar, salt, pepper, red wine vinegar, and olive oil. It was delicious and light.

Did you have a good weekend? We had a great but a busy weekend (more on that later). My friend and I have been following the Casey Anthony murder trial and are anticipating the next week's case presentation. I enjoy reading about trails much more now that I have been to law school! At this point, I do not have any major thoughts about the case. Have you been following it?

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Mid-Week

How is your week going? Mine is going by pretty quickly. Monday was brutal. I was not ready to return to work after the weekend. One thing I really dislike is not being efficient while I am at work....nothing is more annoying than wasting time because I am in a bad mood or just not feeling it. Monday was one of those days. I think that this was a collective sentiment as I went to yoga on Monday evening and everybody was dragging, tired, and in a grumpy mood. My teacher even commented after class that everybody seemed...off.

On Tuesday, however, I woke up, felt refreshed, and happy.

This kitty has been in trouble lately:She constantly waits by the doors, wanting someone to slip and let her out by accident. Upon being released to the outside world, she runs away and promptly cowers because she is scared by the outside world.

Someone is too big for their paws, it seems.


My impatiens that were NOT planted within reach of a certain varmint are still thriving:As are my petunias that were gifted to me on the girls' weekend:
While I was growing up, my grandmother had gorgeous flower gardens that I just loved. I have to say that it wasn't until I tried planting my own flowers that I discovered what an investment those gardens are/were....so much time and patience goes into growing things. I want to get better at growing things as I age!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Guacamole Salad by Ina Garten

Last week, David's sister mentioned guacamole, which got me hankering the dish. I made this recipe this weekend and it was delicious! Please note that in the picture above, I failed to add the tomatoes or the cilantro. I decided not to add beans at all because I wanted to keep the salad very light. Over all, though, it was fabulous.

Click here for the recipe. Thanks, Ina Garten! Another great summer recipe!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Father's Day Weekend

This past weekend we celebrated Father's Day by going to St. Louis to see both of our families. It was fun to get away and enjoy a culinary tour of St. Louis! On Saturday we ate lunch at Rigazzi's on the Hill, which had delicious toasted ravioli. Then, we went to Ted Drewes frozen custard:


One word: yum.

After that, we walked around Francis park, the Galleria, and then went to the baseball game to cheer on the Cards against the Royals (although while we were at the game I actually cheered on the Royals, so I should have worn a blue shirt):
After the game, we enjoyed some White Castle! You either love it or you hate it...but I love it and I ate wayyyyyy too much!

We spent the night at David's parents' house and went to mass with his family on Sunday morning. After mass, we went out for some delicious lunch.

I am feeling like I need to detox after all of that eating! We had a great weekend.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Lake weekend!

Sorry for the long hiatus from blogging, but I just needed a break for the week last week. We had a great week, enjoying time with friends and family and summer in general. Why be inside blogging when I can be outside enjoying the hot summer heat? Anyway, I enjoyed my break but want to get back at it this week.

Last weekend, we went to the Lake of the Ozarks with my college buddies. We try to make the trip every year (last year was a bust, as two of us studied ALL summer long), and it is always a blast. I love hanging out with my friends, of course, but it is also fun to have the guys come and enjoy the weekend as well (and of course, soak up some sun)!

We ordered pizza, laid in the water, barbecued, and just enjoyed the lake. It was our friend Jeff's birthday, so we sang to him with a gorgeous cake made by his bride:

Of course the candles were trick candles. The smoke alarm went off:Funny thing is that we have ANOTHER picture almost exactly like this one....only in that picture I am waving a Vogue at the detector and this time I am waving an IPad....oh how times have changed!

Have belated birthday Jeff and thanks, girls, for another fun weekend!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

My new friend

I have made a new friend. Whenever I go running, this guy starts to follow me:


He always chases behind me, wanting pets. I think he lives at a house along my route and wants to make friends while hunting.

I wish he would come to my house to hunt. Someone or something ate all of my impatiens (sp?) last night. Do my animals do anything?

Paco did conduct an olfactory investigation of the tree. The natural hunters did nothing. What is eating my flowers?

Monday, June 13, 2011

Kitty Birthday!!!!

My family has a friend who very much dislikes cats (crazy, I know), so when I was little I made my cat's birthdays the same day as hers. Happy Birthday, Cindy!!! And Happy Birthday, Thorina and Arwen!

We got these kitties from friends after they were born, so obviously figuring out their actual birthday would be a lost cause.
We probably won't really do much to celebrate, either....maybe just give extra appreciation for our little felines!Thorina will be 4 years old and Arwen will be 3.
Right now they are supposed to be on a diet, but in the course of the diet Thorina lost a ton of weight and Arwen (the fatter cat) gained weight.
Happy Birthday to my pretty kitties! I enjoy having them so much and hope they like it at our house!

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Sick Day

Paco felt sorry for me

Last Wednesday I had to take a half day sick day. The night before, my throat started hurting like I was swallowing daggers. I tried to go into work, but felt so horrible.

It was a big day because it was my first ever sick day at a real, grown-up job! I never really knew when being sick was too sick to stay at work, because when I was in school it seemed that the only times I got sick was during finals season, so I rarely stayed home because I had to be in class to hear the lectures and take my finals. When I got home, I made some chicken soup with dumplings to help my throat. Then I laid in bed alllllll afternoon. After I slept, I felt much better.

It taught me not to necessarily stay at work just to be dog tired and not well. Taking an afternoon to sleep and make myself feel better not only made me feel better, but probably made me ultimately more productive!

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

SO cute



This kid is awesome.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Race Report: Hospital Hill Half Marathon

I ran in the Hospital Hill Half Marathon on Saturday. The race is known as being a really hilly race (hence the name), and it certainly lived up to the hype! While on the first 6 miles, I thought that surely the end would be all downhill because I felt like I was going uphill the entire way. Nope....the end 7 miles were also uphill. How do they do that?

Overall, the race was great. I thought that it was pretty well-run for how big it is (7,500 people). A few comments:

  • The beginning corral was really, really crowded. I was standing RIGHT next to the people around me (so close that we may as well have been touching). I felt hot.
  • Speaking of the heat, it was H-O-T. We had to be sure that we were drinking plenty of water and I even drank some Gatorade even though I NEVER drink Gatorade. At one point, I had to stop drinking it because I felt a bad reflex coming on, but overall the water plan worked.
  • The bathrooms....the bathrooms were horribly planned. Julie and I ran the race together and I think that at about mile 4-5 we decided to go to the bathroom. We saw a port-o-potty but decided to go to the next one because there was a big line. Big mistake. The next bathroom had an even BIGGER line and there was only one port! We waited in line for TWENTY minutes...which, if you are a runner, means that I now have twenty extra minutes added on my race time. No bueno.
  • Overall, though, I felt that the race course was interesting and I enjoyed it. I never felt like any particular mile was incredibly long, and I felt like I was in a good pace throughout the entire race.
Now I want to sign up for another half marathon!

Monday, June 06, 2011

Our weekend

We had a great weekend! On Friday evening my friend Julie came into town and we had a pasta party so we could carb load for the half marathon! On Saturday we ran in our race (I will post a race report later!). My mom ran in the 10k:
After that, we went to the pool and hung out outside for a while. After taking some quick naps at home, we went to the Royals game:
and saw Truman the Tiger!
I was so pathetic on Saturday evening....I went to sleep at 9:30 p.m.! Running in the half marathon was SO exhausting and then being in the sun made me feel so hot. On Sunday, I decided to relax most of the day (and clean my house). Kitty helped me relax:

I hope your weekend was great!

Friday, June 03, 2011

Summer outfits

I love cute, flowing dresses for the summer....something easy that I can throw on and look cute for dinner or drinks with friends. I found a dress very similar to this one from Francesca's Collections and love it! I have to admit that that store is a bit like Forever 21...sometimes I feel like an impostor among all of the teenagers in that store...but I couldn't resist this dress.

What are some of your favorite summer pieces?

Michael Kors leather sandal
$750 - net-a-porter.com

Gorjana hook earring
$70 - charmandchain.com

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Tapering

This post has nothing to do with the pictures, but I had to share these beyond adorable pics of my puppy.

This week I am tapering my running...which means that I cannot run as much in anticipation of the big race. I am not sure how it will go...I think that I will be really tired by the end of it, and happy if I run the entire thing. The course is really hilly, which makes it about ten times more difficult than a "normal" half marathon.
I ran six miles on Monday and Tuesday, and on Wednesday I plan to go to yoga and run shorter distances.

My Monday run was great. The weather was beautiful and the weather was hot. I love running in the summer heat, so I was beyond happy to run in shorts and a tank top!

I am now considering my workout routine post-race. Should I keep running long distances during the week? I feel like I want to sign up for another race or two to keep me motivated....

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Eggplant

We love eggplant at our house. The vegetable is SO delicious and versatile.

Do you want a delicious recipe for eggplant?
"Why, no," you are thinking, "That looks like something Paco regurgitated. But thank you."

Never fear, dear readers. You should know that this recipe is delicious.

Peanut Eggplant

- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- two eggplant
-
1/2 cup olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and dice the eggplant into bite-sized pieces. Smother the eggplant with olive oil and let cook for appx. 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, put the remaining ingredients into a saucepan and bring to a boil. Don't let it boil very long, though, becuase you may have a mess on your hands. Stir to combine.

Once the eggplant is partially roasted, pour the liquid mixture on top of the vegetables and let cook for another 15 minutes. Stir to combine the remaining sauce with the eggplant. This allows full peanut coverage. Yum.