Monday, October 31, 2011

Quail Man & Patti Mayonnaise

So... new job = no time to blog!

I just started last Monday, so I'm still trying to get into my own groove.  Soon enough, I'll find my routine and be back to regular blogging! :)  Anyways...

On Saturday, Brett and I went to a Halloween party.  We dressed up as Quail Man and Patti Mayonnaise from the Nickelodeon show 'Doug'.  If you were born in the mid 80's, then I expect you to know the show!  We weren't sure if people would get our costumes, but they ended up being a huge hit!
Our inspiration...

And here are our costumes!

We had so much fun dressing up.  We haven't really dressed up in the past couple years, so this was extra fun!  Minus the fact that it took me about 2 hours to get all the hair spray, bobby pins, and curls out of my hair the next day...

Happy Halloween!!*

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Our Festive Fall Weekend

This weekend we celebrated Fall to the max!  The weather was chilly but so beautifully sunny.  It was the perfect Fall weather.  It was so nice to have a weekend at home with no set plans.  We just flew by the seat of our pants all weekend, doing whatever we felt like, and boy did it feel good!

Row 1:
Celebrating my new job with beers at Rock Bottom (more on that later!)
Pumpkin spice pancakes to welcome the weekend
Row 2:
Simmons Farm to go pumpkin pickin'
Loads and loads of pumpkins

Row 3:
This guy was heavy
This farm was beautiful & the weather matched

Row 4:
A couple gourds I picked out -- my favorite is the yellow & green one
Festive Fall place settings

Row 5:
Brett posing with our mini pumpkin before he chopped it up to make soup
Our attempt at pumpkin soup... it looks pretty, but it wasn't very good...

Row 6:
Homemade pumpkin curry & rice -- now this recipe did turn out good! 
My cute hubby

Ahh, so in love with Fall right now...
Having a great week so far, hope you are too!*

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Santa Monica Sunset

What is it about sunsets that give you such clarity?  I feel like when I'm standing there staring at this magnificent sight that everything just becomes clear in my mind.  Like there is a calm in the air and everything just makes sense in life.  Like all the answers are suddenly laid out so simply, right there, while staring at the colors go from blue to orange to pink.

On the last night of our California vacation, we witnessed this beautiful sunset.  It was the best sunset we saw during our whole trip, sitting there on the sands of Santa Monica.  It was beautiful.  The perfect moment to peacefully reflect on the great adventure we just had.  The perfect moment to dream about all our future adventures yet to come...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Rock Climbing at Coopers Rock

A couple weekends ago, Brett's sister Kelly came to visit us in Pittsburgh.  She recently got into rock climbing, so we decided to take her down to Coopers Rock to do a little climbing outside!  The weather was PERFECT!


Fall is in full force around here.  The trees and the views were seriously gorgeous.

Ahhh, how can anyone not like the outdoors???

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Mini Wine Country Getaway

This past weekend, Brett and I headed up to Lake Erie to go wine touring with our good friends, Dan and BreAnne.  The surrounding areas of Erie and the New York border along Lake Erie are known for their great wineries.  As a wedding gift, Dan and BreAnne got us a bunch of gift certificates to wineries up there and a one night stay at this adorable little bed and breakfast right on Lake Erie.  The view from our room was amazing.  It was such a nice little weekend getaway!*

And now we somehow came home with about 2 cases of wine... oops.  Good thing we like wine!*

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

'Tis the season to add pumpkin to basically everything.  I started making these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies last Fall and they were such a hit!  They have more of a muffin-like texture than normal cookies... and they are heavenly.  Here's the recipe:  

1 cup canned pumpkin
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp milk
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 cups chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine pumpkin, sugar, oil, and egg in a bowl.  In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.  Dissolve baking soda and milk together, then stir into flour mixture.  Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture and mix well.  Add vanilla and chocolate chips.  Drop by the spoonful on a well greased cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 12 minutes until lightly brown.

Pair these babies with a pumpkin spice latte and you are good to go!*

(Still more California posts to come... just need to get around to writing them!)

Friday, October 14, 2011

The Hanson Concert that Never Was...

Step 1.
Get pumped up all day

Step 2:
Meet up with everyone for drinks & dinner

Sept 3:
Find out 10 minutes before doors open that the show is cancelled...

:( :( :(

I was SO excited for the Hanson concert last night.  For those of you that don't know, I am a huge Hanson fan and have been since MMMBop came out back in 1997.  Laugh all you want, I don't care.  I used to follow their tours in the Summer, going city to city with them and had the time of my life.   And now, I hadn't see them in concert since 2008 and that is like craziness for me.  So I was looking forward to this concert for a whiiiile.  But they came down with some kind of sickness this past week.  They cancelled the two shows they had before the Pittsburgh show, but said they were going to try and still do it.  Well, I guess they just kept getting more and more sick because they ended up cancelling the show only an hour before it started.  While I am super bummed, I am more concerned for their health and well-being.  Hopefully they rest up and can reschedule soon!!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

One day towards the end of our California vacation, we decided to ditch the beaches and head inland to the desert and mountains.  We drove to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park.  The temperature change from the coast into the desert was crazy.  It was a cool 70 degrees when we left San Clemente in the morning and by the time we got into the desert, it was nearly 100 degrees. 

We drove through the state park, stopping every once in a while to take some cool photos or see an awesome view.  Eventually, we made it to a trail head and decided to take a little hike through the desert.  It was SO hot.  We didn't last very long since the sun was beating down with no shade and we went through our water supply pretty fast.  Oh, and the fact that Brett got attacked by a "jumping" cactus... which he said was the most painful thing he has ever experienced in his life.  But other than that, the scenery was AWESOME... 

The desert was AWESOME.  We just don't get that kind of stuff on the east coast.  Brett and I are always blown away by California and the fact that you can be at the beach in the morning, the desert in the afternoon, and the snowy mountains by night fall.  The best of all worlds!