30 May 2013

7 Quick Takes {vol. 10}



Another link up party with Jen... for more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!


{1}
On Monday, I had two guest post's featured on two blogs I follow.  I wrote "Skinny-sh vs. Fat-ish" wars for Samantha and a book review for Mandi.  Go check these ladies blogs out if you're looking for something new n' fun to read!! :)



{2}

Also on Monday we went to my grandparent's grave site to put some fresh American flags down for Grandpa.  He was a proud WWII Navy veteran.  He was on the boats working as a mechanic to make sure the engine didn't conk out as the boats came in on the Normandy D-Day invasion.  When the movie 'Saving Private Ryan' came my Dad and uncle took Grandpa to see it because they were worried how it would be for him re-living the experience.  After the movie they asked him if it was portrayed as he experienced and remembered it.  Grandpa's response? "It was worse; much worse."

This June 2 is the 2 year anniversary of Grandpa's death, and to remember Memorial Day and also honor his life, we could think of no better way to do so than visiting his grave with flags.
Love and miss you Grandpa!



{3}
Last Saturday afternoon, Jim and I decided to have a spur of the moment date night.  All day long I had been craving a good strawberry shake (it's crazy because I NEVER go for fruit in dessert, but it just sounded so good to me...and no, there is no bun in the oven:).  We decided to walk from our apartment to this ice cream shop nearby and then decided to walk through a cute downtown area near where we live.  Turns out they had live music and dancing; the streets were all blocked off and lots of families where there with their little ones.  We loved just watching all the people dancing and the little kids running around "thinking" they were dancing.  It was a light cool night out and we just had fun people watching and walking around...we even got a dance in together to a Frank Sinatra song.  Afterwards we walked back home and headed to bed earlier.  Simple, low-key night, but we had a blast!!



{4}
Tuesday night was my first meeting for a women's small group I am starting to attend through the young adult group we have gotten involved with.  I was kind of nervous the first time because I don't really know any of the gals at all, and at first when I'm in a room full of folks I don't know I'm kinda quiet, but they all seem really nice and half are married and the other half are single, so its a good mix.  We're going to meet twice a month; I'm looking forward to meeting other Catholic gal's and making some new friends.


{5}
On Sunday after we got home from church, Jim went and played out in the woods behind our apartment.  Well clearly I'm not married to a wilderness expert because he got a rash (we think it's poison oak) on his left leg.  He refuses to see a doctor, but he has been putting a wash and cream on his leg several times a day.  I am just worried he is gonna spread it to me; I more or less demanded he wear long pants to bed so he doesn't get his leper cream all over me/the sheets.  It probably doesn't help that I tease him and call him "my little leper."  Hopefully it clears up soon!


{6}
Monday night we happened to catch the last half hour on a special documentary of the royal baby of Prince William and Princess Kate.  I love following the royal couple, even though it is harder since I canceled my People subscription, but this show was a pleasant surprise.  And how can you not love the modern chic Audrey Hepburn-ish fashion style of Kate???  Her fashion sense is flawless...if only to have her lovely wardrobe for a day ;-)  The show we watched talked about all the preparations for the new royal baby, traditions in the royal family for a new heir, and also got a look into the official nanny school that has been taking care of royal's since the 1800's. Crazy!


{7}
Do any of you ladies who are married ever argue with your hubby about chores??? Holy. cow. that seems to be the cause of many rifts lately!  I'm a control, schedule freak.  Jim is more laid back and easy going...no he is not lazy, but in the heat of a moment I may have been quoted in yelling that at him; not one of my finest moments as a wife.  I live and thrive on to-do lists; I actually write things on the darn list just so I can cross it off later?? Weird, I know.

So we have tried a chore list and me helping Jim come with a list for each day, but those failed.  So our newest attempt at smoothing my anal retentive nature and his care free spirit, at the beginning of each week we create a to-do list together.  For things we both have to do individually and also for up keep of our home, and then we have the week to complete those things.  Of course on the first day of this new trial run, I FLIPPED out one day when I came home cause only 1 thing was crossed off....let's just say I have a long way to go in patience and being flexible.
If any of you gals, have idea's you and your husband use for a chore system, I'm all ears!!!


Happy Friday and have a fantastic weekend:)

29 May 2013

5 Favorites {vol. 7}



Wowzers.  Been over a month since my last link up with Hallie.  Be sure to check out the link up party at her place:)




{1}
This. Chobani.
Last Friday, when I went grocery shopping I came across these little "mini's" of chobani yogurt.  What sold me was the raspberry flavor and the chips of dark chocolate swirled through (um. yes. please??!!).  Very tasty for an afternoon snack or part of my breakfast routine...the only downer is that for 3.5 oz it is 3 Weight Watcher points.  That is high for Greek yogurt; especially when I can get the normal size for 2 points.  Slight bummer, but it doesn't take away its yumm factor:)





{2}
15 cal Minute Maid lemonade

With summer on its way, this is very tasty way to do lemonade 
without all those extra calories...for ya'll Weigh Watcher fans it is 0 points; major score!  It is REALLY quite dee-lic...it is quickly becoming my new favorite beverage of choice in our home. Tart, fresh, crisp taste that if summer had a flavor it would be this flavor.  Do yourself a favor and get some next time at the grocery store.


{3}

This FREE printable!

Which can be downloaded at this lovely's blog


And which I framed up earlier this week and is sitting on our bookshelves in the living room:)

Picture not great quality...it looks better in person












{4}

This artsy design in a friend's bathroom


 This may sound creepy.  So last night was the first meeting of my women's group.
At some point I went to the bathroom (which by the way, the gal who hosted
us lives in the most adorable house).  I saw this cool, artsy designs above the fixtures in 
her bathroom.  Aren't they cute??  Any idea's where you would get them??





{5}
These. Chips.









These tasty things go splendidly with my #2.  Lately when we are feeling like an unhealthy snack, these HIT the spot.  A big yumm factor all around.
And after ya lick your fingers to get the sea salt/vinegar taste, washing it down with a crisp glass of lemonade just hits. the. spot.
I could be an advertiser for food tasting! ;-)












27 May 2013

Coffee & Conversation #2 {Modesty}

simply free 
Awhile ago I linked with Kalyn for a bi-weekly link up she hosts.  The question today was really thought provoking and made me think, so I decided to link up with her and add my thoughts:)




This week's question: How would you describe modesty for the modern woman?  Why or why not is it important in today's world?

I think in our world sometimes modesty gets a bad rap.  People think to be modest or a lady, you have to wear long, boring skirts way past your ankles or wear something as exciting as a paper bag for a fancy evening out with your boyfriend/husband.  I have met folks who understand modesty as a young woman who is old-fashioned, a prude, and/or boring.  All of these I think are false images of what modesty is.  And sure, dressing to have all your "parts" hanging out for the world to see isn't such a hot idea also for a variety of reasons, but modesty is more than just how you dress.

In my family of origin, I grew hearing and understanding what modesty is.  I remember having a lot of good conversations with my Mom and younger sister on what it means/looks like to be a true lady.  My Mom taught us that modesty has a lot to do with how you respect yourself.  She always reminded us that modesty really is more about understanding your true dignity as a daughter of the King, like we are Jesus' little princesses ( as little girl who LOVED playing dress up, I took to heart this analogy).  Modesty is important yes in how we dress and represent ourselves to the world, but modesty also is connected for how speak and treat other people.  My Mom told my sister and I "Modesty is not just a one time deal, but a life style choice...you live it out in many different ways by witness of your life."  So as we were little girl's growing into to teenagers and then young women, she lovingly encourage us throughout growing up: is the way we are speaking to or about another person being respectful of my/another's God-given dignity?  Are the outfits we choose calling others to respect not only our physical body, but our heart, mind, and soul as well?

In reflecting on what modesty is for the modern woman, I look back to the conversations with my Mom and sister over the years.  Modesty for the modern woman is not just merely on how you dress (although yes it is a piece of the equation), but it is more of a lifestyle and a mindset.  How we speak to and about others, a selfless heart of compassion, striving to live a life of virtue, and genuine humility.  By living a lifestyle of modesty, we can bring hope and joy into a broken, hurting world.  A world where women are abused, not loved/respected, told they aren't beautiful/thin enough, do not understand their God-given dignity, etc.   
I think modesty is very important and needed in our world today, and I think is so wonderfully summed up in the above quote (This is actually in my prayer journal as a constant reminder for me in my life! :).  We live in a fast paced, hyper-sexualized world, that underplays and overlooks what it really means to be a woman today.  My own life witness and the witness of other woman can help empower and encourage women who want something different for themselves; who want to find their true purpose, meaning, and dignity.  I certainly don't claim to have it all together or that I am this walking poster board of modesty perfection 101, but I continually strive and work it.







26 May 2013

May Cara Box Reveal

Who doesn't love to get ol' fashioned snail mail (I mean other than bills!)??






 
I finally did a Cara Box!! Anyone ever heard of Birchbox or any of those kind of things? Well, Cara Box is essentially a system where you get paired with a blogger to send to and receive from each month. And you send items of a certain amount based on the theme as it pertains to her interests.  It was created by Kaitlyn from Wifessionals.  I heard about when I started following Kaityln's blog, and it sounded like a neat way to meet other bloggers too.  Anyway. Here is the reveal of this month's exchange.

I was paired up with Katherine from The Newsom's Nest.  She and her husband live in southern California where he is in the Marines.  Katherine hails from Texas, and is just such a sweet woman. The theme for this month was to send things that represent/your match likes, but with a twist it has to represent the state you come from.  I'll admit at first I was wondering how to pull this off, but I think it ended up going well, and Katherine really seemed to enjoy it.  I sent her bamboo cutting board in the shape of the mitten because Katherine likes to cook, some Sander's chocolate and milk chocolate dessert topping because she loves chocolate and definitely has a sweet tooth (local MI product), a bottle of Vernor's ginger ale (local MI product), a cup that can be used for hot/cold drinks because Katherine likes o drink sweet tea and the best part is the mug said "Don't mess with the mitten!", and I included a letter of encouragement for her.  I had a lot of fun putting together a Michigan friendly box for Katherine:)

I received a great box from Zohary at A Grace Fueled Life and she also hails from California but in the San Francisco bay area.  She put together a great box of some wonderful things for me!


There were some dee-lic chocolates from a local California company but are not pictured here because Jim and I devoured those bad boys.  The red journal is because I really love to write and always have multiple prayer journals.  The book behind it is a Christian fiction book that actually takes place in San Francisco which is where Zohary is from.  The sparkly earrings are because she could tell I'm kinda a girly girl ;)  Right behind the earrings is some lavender hand soap; it smells so good! On the right side of the picture up front is some adorable measuring spoons and behind it some garlic oil since I'm trying to start cooking more.  Next to the cooking supplies is a fresh lemon scented candle...it's smells so good, I could almost eat it...almost. ;-)  The measuring spoons and the candle got a little busted on the trip out to Michigan, but nothing a little crazy glue can't fix.

It has been great getting to know these two ladies through their blogs, and I really enjoyed participating in my first Cara Box exchange.  If you're looking to meet and connect with other gals in the blog-o-sphere, consider doing a Cara Box exchange sometime!
Be sure to go and visit these lovely ladies!

Have a wonderful holiday weekend!!

The recipe that helped my crock pot and I become besties :)




For those of you who are married, did you ever get a gift from your wedding shower and/or as a wedding gift that you thought, "Oh geez, I'll never use that thing!"??
For the longest time that's how I felt about our crock pot.
 I should also add for my birthday the year we got engaged my aunt got me this top of the line crock pot; we're talking primo stuff here folks...so fancy it even comes with a meat probe.  Anyway, I was searching on Friday afternoon before we went grocery shopping looking for some new Pinterest recipes to try.  Lately, neither of us just cannot seem to get enough Mexican food.
So I was really excited to try a new twist on taco's, but it also gave me a chance to whip out our crock pot since the fall.

The "Crock Pot Chicken Taco's" were a HUGE hit with Jim, and boy oh boy, were they super freaking easy too!

 Ingredients were: 6 boneless chicken breasts, 1 packet of reduced sodium taco seasoning (we used Old El Paso reduced sodium), and 1 16 oz. jar of salsa.  That's it. I know, easy peasy, right??


Put all the ingredients in the crock pot...I also made sure to mix the taco seasoning in some with the salsa to make sure they flavor got around.  Cook on 4-6 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low.

We let the crock pot boil and simmer all day, and Friday night when we came home from a good hike in the woods, our apartment smelled SO good!  After cooking the chicken all day, it's really easy to pull apart and be shredded.

 The one mistake I learned the hard way, is drain the chicken really really good before making into taco's.  I went to take a bite of it from my hard shell taco, and it fell apart on my face from the shell getting to soggy.  Mild mess on my face and shirt, but nothing Shout can't handle.

It's funny because every time I make a new recipe and ask Jim what he thinks of it he answers, "Oh this is even better than the last one we tried!"  I must be getting better:)

Crock pot chicken taco's earned thumbs up all around and full, happy tummies!

Happy cooking!!!

24 May 2013

7 Quick Takes {vol.9}

Be sure to link up with Jen too:)


{1}
Kaitlyn from Wifessionals has this neat thing she had started on her blog called the Cara Box Exchange.  What it is is bloggers from all over the US are paired up and spend a month getting to know each other through their blogs.  You send a package to a gal with all kinds of goodies based on her likes and the theme for the month and a letter of encouragement.  May was the month where everything had to be something related to the state you live in.  So I got a lovely box from Zohary in California and sent one to Katherine in California.  Who doesn't love getting things in the mail, right??  It was a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to participating in another Cara Box Exchange in the future:)

Here are some of the things Zohary sent me...doing a reveal post on it over the weekend:)

{2}
Jim has started going to a local men's group through a nearby church.  One of the leaders was telling him about an upcoming retreat the second week in June (6-9) in Pittsburgh.  It is called "Into the Wild."  Basically it is a wilderness experience full of different wilderness activities like survival skills, fishing, weaponry, wild game food prep, outdoor construction, and more.  It is also Catholic so there are opportunities for Mass, Confession, and talks on man's role in the family as protector and provider.  He was all pumped up and after watching the video I was pretty impressed too!  If you know of any men in your life interested have them check out this video.

 More details at: www.intothewildweekend.com


{3}
I have never really been much of a Kohl's shopper much.  A few weeks back we went out shopping for Jim to get him a nicer, more professional wardrobe (You know its bad when a Dad gives his son all his old jeans and ties from the 80's).  Because we got a HUGE tax refund back, we set aside some money to get him some clothes.  We got a ton of things at Kohl's; to the point we earned $90 in Kohl's cash...which I went to buy a couple cute summer things last Saturday. Two tops, pairs of sandals, and an adorable coral Lauren Conrad skirt that was on the clearance rack, score!  So I just think I may have come around awesomeness of Kohl's :)

{4}
As of last Sunday, it is exactly 2 months till we leave for the World Youth Day festivities in Rio.  I'm starting to get more excited.  I have ordered some things for our pilgrimage online, so I've been getting packages almost every day this week.  You know you're going to a WYD when ya get excited about seeing travel toilet paper packets and toilet seat covers.  Tomorrow a Youth Minister friend is leading a retreat for our group and another group joining our journey to Rio, should be a great day!




{5}
Next weekend Jim and I are going up north to his family cottage in Canada for little family trip to celebrate his Mom for Mother's Day.  The deck overlooks Lake Huron, and its really beautiful at sunset.  We're going up Friday morning and coming home Sunday afternoon, so it will be a nice little get away with his family:)


{6}
 We went grocery shopping rather early this morning.  I'm kind of weird but I actually rather enjoy grocery shopping and find it kind of fun! I'm excited to try some more new recipes in the coming weeks: easy peasy skillet lasagna and skinny taco chicken chili.  The crock pot is actually up and running and cooking our dinner for tonight; crock pot chicken taco's.  We've been on a Mexican food kick, and it helps that most are Weight Watcher friendly!

{7}

Sunday and Monday are going to just be quiet days around here, we're thinking of having a picnic lunch or something.  Other than that, looking forward to relaxing and maybe getting lost in a good book:)

Happy Friday!

16 May 2013

We live in a crazy, weird world...

...where the killing of children is legal.  Crazy, huh, that a culture like ours which is supposedly so smart and rational to allow such a thing to happen.

Jim and I had a long conversation last night about the whole trial of Kermit Gosnell and that horrible case that is in the news from Cleveland.

Gosnell was an abortionist who was charged with 3 first degree murder charges of cutting the spines of babies who were born as a result of his botched abortions (even though many more than 3 babies died in his 'care').  In Cleveland, several women were kidnapped for years; abused, raped, and held prisoners.  Some had children, and now details are coming out that the man who held these women beat them so badly during some of their pregnancies that it caused an intentional mis-carriage....I'm reading reports here and here that some want to hold first degree murder charges against this man for the deaths they intentionally caused on those mis-carried children.
here's the crazy weird part, folks.  hold onto your socks.

So how are those mis-carried babies of the women who were abducted in Cleveland any different than babies who were born as a result of failed abortion attempts??? I mean come. on. Science doesn't lie, look at the facts.  Either those "fetuses" are little human persons or they are not.  Gosnell was convicted in the murder of three babies, BUT if he had done it just a bit earlier, it would have been perfectly legal.  But now, some folks are demanding justice for the lives of babies who mis-carried in the Cleveland case.  Does anyone else see all the crazy in this?!

Let me go a step further.  Most of you probably remember Laci Peterson?   She was 7 months pregnant when she went missing and was abducted, and her body and the body of her son were found in a lake not far from where she went missing 3 months later.  The sadness and outrage of Laci's family/friends led to led Congress to pass the Unborn Victims of Violence Act (also called "Laci and Conner's Law"). So a law was created to honor the lives of Laci and her son, Conner; which basically states if a pregnant woman is murdered, a suspect can be tried for two charges of murder: the mother and the child she carried.  So basically there is a law in state that characterizes an unborn fetus as a "human", but at the same time Roe v. Wade which is the law of the land in the US says an unborn little person is not human and has no rights.
I really believe that if the media talked about this Gosnell case, it would absolutely destroy the the rationale and logic for having abortion on demand in our nation...because once you look at the science/logic of it all (in my head), I just don't really see how it works.

And so our conversation over this horrific case in Cleveland, the whole Gosnell case, and even remembering Laci and Conner Peterson have got me thinking and praying more and more...on what we have to do to accomplish and be the change you want to see in the world.

From Sandy Hook to those women in Cleveland who suffered greatly, we have MUCH to pray for justice/healing/peace/hearts to be changed in our world...


10 May 2013

7 Quick Takes {vol. 8}...The Graduate edition



It's Friday round up time with Jen...around these parts today, its the graduate edition for the Hubbard's (no not that trashy movie "The Graduate"...I ain't no Mrs. Robinson).


 
{1}
On Thursday, Jim graduated with his Master's in Social Work.  Bragasourous moment, you've been warned ;-)  Really proud of the ol' husband today (can I say ol' husband even if we've been married less than a year??), he's worked his little butt of the past two years to crank out his degree and today we celebrated the fruits of his labors.  Next step for Mr. Hubbard?  Beginning to network and work with a therapist mentor so he can begin to share in her practice becoming a partner as a faith based counselor...go chief, go!!! :)



{2}
The other day I posted this new Weight Watcher recipe, Skinny Deep Dish Taco Pie.  All I know Jim gave it 2 thumbs up and that is good enough for me:)  Check it out here, if you need a tasty, easy peasy recipe for dinner!!


{3}
A few weeks back on Facebook, I was asking for advice for our anniversary trip/vacation in June for a road trip to the Upper Peninsula.  However, after talking more, looking at finances, and seeing Jim has some start up cost to begin working with his mentor, we decided to can the big shindig, and are planning something more modest.  Jim is calling it "the perfect day."  We're talking about talking the train to Grand Rapids and finding some fun things to do like visit breweries (Jim loved that idea) and going to museum's (this one is me:).  Hopefully we can plan some things soon, since June is like, umm next month!


{4}
I have mentioned Ann Voskamp a few times here before, what an amazing woman of God!  Recently on her blog, she wrote this awesome post, The Ultimate Girlfriend Gift...she talks about woman's struggles to not believe the lie that we are not enough, what real, true friendships with women look like, and great resources/printables to make meaningful gifts for the girlfriends in your life...maybe something neat in the future to do with women's ministry in youth ministry? :)






{5}
Just over 2 months till World Youth Day in Rio!?!?!? Wowzers.
Stumbled across this video recently, really getting excited...I have a sense this one is gonna be different but in good ways; for one thing its a small group and I get to share it all with my Dad who is our male protector...
Its awesome events like this that re-remind me how awesome it is to be Catholic...I mean, who wouldn't wanna party with  couple million of brother and sisters in faith?? Check it out and share in our excitement!
video
 



{6}

Last Saturday, my friend Rebecca and I drove down to visit our nun friend, Sr. Rita Clare...what a great time!! We were exhausted after all the driving, but had so much fun!  We got to visit, have a tour of their beautiful chapel, go to Mass, go to dinner/McDonald's with a nun in her habit, praised it up for the Lord, and after a stop at the gas station for ice cream and an hour chat in the convent driveway...we were back on the road again!  I love having such awesome friends that encourage, support, and give me a good kick in the pants when I need it!


Love me some time with my besties:)


{7}
 And lastly, here are some words from Pope Francis Palm Sunday homily to the young people coming to Rio in July...pray for our group as we finalize preparations and ready our hearts and minds...
 
"We are already close to the next stage of this great pilgrimage of the Cross. I look forward joyfully to next July in Rio de Janeiro! I will see you in that great city in Brazil! Prepare well – prepare spiritually above all – in your communities, so that our gathering in Rio may be a sign of faith for the whole world. Young people must say to the world: to follow Christ is good; to go with Christ is good; the message of Christ is good; emerging from ourselves, to the ends of the earth and of existence, to take Jesus there, is good! Three words, then: joy, Cross, young."- Pope Francis, Palm Sunday

Happy Weekending!!
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

08 May 2013

Skinny Deep Dish Taco Pizza...un.freaking.believable.



I like food. Sometimes I like food too much, hence the relationship in my life with Weight Watchers.  I've never really shown any interest in cooking, and the ongoing joke with my family before I got married was my ability of cooking for Jim and I after getting married would be bowls of cereal and Lean Cuisine frozen meals...but I know I can proudly say I'm really making some strides in the kitchen.  Knowing that I'm working Weight Watchers and losing some, Jim has encouraged me every 2 weeks when we go grocery shopping to try at least 3 new recipes to make for dinner.  I have to say it is really helping me take a greater interest in cooking.

So last night, we tried out this new Weight Watcher recipe (only 8 points per serving, which is pretty good!), Skinny Deep Dish Taco Pizza.  We have been on a Mexican food kick for a few weeks now in terms of dinner, and this sounded relatively easy, but also looked freaking. dee-lic. (which yes it was:).


 Ingredients:  1 lb. ground turkey (I prob would have used 1 1/2 next time we make this), 1/2 cup of chopped onion, 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes, can of re-fried beans, packet of reduced sodium taco seasoning (the one item Jim forgot to get at the store, so we played around with the seasoning this time), 3/4 cup of water, 1.5 cans of reduced fat crescent rolls, cup of reduced fat cheddar cheese, fat-free sour cream and salsa for a garnish at the end.


Directions:

1. Brown meat and onions together in a pan, and drain grease/water (forgot to take a picture! ggrr)

2.  Add water, seasoning, and tomatoes to the meat/onion mixture






3. In a 9 x 13 baking pan, spray the pan with non-stick cooking spray.  Then roll out the crescent rolls onto the bottom of the pan and up the sides of the pan (this is a little trickier than it looks, just remember patience is a virtue!)






4.  Using a spatula, spread out the can of re-fried beans onto the pressed down crescent rolls.  Using a spatula made this a whole lot easier than using a spoon....and, of course I forgot to take another picture, whoops on me!


5.  Then spoon the meat mixture of yumminess onto the re-fried bean thingy.



6.  Bake at 425 for 12 minutes, and then remove and sprinkle on the cheese. The, pop that bad boy back into the oven for another 5 minutes so the cheese is all melted:)








7.  Let it cool off for about 5 minutes, and then garnish (don't ya just love that word, makes me feel fine n' fancy :) with sour cream and salsa.



8.  And then feast on this Mexican yumminess! :)

Let me know if ya get a chance try it and what you think of it!! :)


03 May 2013

7 Quick Takes {vol. 7}




Happy TGIF!  Some quick-a-roo takes with Jen...
Writing and reflecting on the week as Jim sits here playing his guitar; so relaxing and soothing...


 {1}
Last Saturday Jim and I were at an all day conference with Renewal Ministries; we absolutely loved it!!  One of the best things we heard??? "Sometimes we only need to be the jackass Jesus is riding in on."  That pretty much sums it up for me...of course there was MUCH more awesomeness than just that!  Jim thought that was so hysterical he leaned over and asked me "Could I get that as a tattoo?"  My response: "Only if you work to be less jackass-ish at home" true love!! ;-)
We walked away with some great tools in our spiritual tool box like how to share and draft your personal testimony, the practical how-to's of sharing your faith, and took a spiritual charism inventory to see what our spiritual gifts are.  It was SO cool because where I was strong, Jim scored lower...and where he was higher, I scored lower; guess God is working out our crazy to do something  cool in this world:)
That evening there was a time of prayer and worship...God really spoke to my heart in a way I have been praying and needing for a good long time.  Hoping to write and reflect about it more this coming week.


{2}
Saturday my friend Rebecca and I are taking a road trip to Ohio to visit our dear nun friend, Sr. Rita Clare for her community's open house.  The three of us go way back from pilgrimages to Ireland and Medjugorje, lots of trips to Coldstone, and many laughs and heart felt talks.  We will be able to visit and celebrate Mass at their community chapel (which is freaking gorgeous!) go have a night of praise/worship with some college students, and then drive home that night....bring on the strong, black coffee! ;-)

Sr. Rita Clare at her first profession of religious vows





Some of nuns in training preparing for the open house ;-)



{3}
This just frustrates me. a lot.
A 15 y/o cannot get a flu shot w/o parental notification, but they can get birth control??
I don't know much more to say than this.
I gave a chastity talk on Wednesday night and had SUCH a great discussion about this with teens, very insightful and full of a dose of awesome:)
Cause this makes so much sense.







{4}
We got our tax refund back!  And boy oh boy were we pleasantly surprised...like a couple thousand surprised.  Saving, paying down some debt, saving some for my WYD pilgrimage, and starting to buy Jim some handsome professional work clothes is on the agenda.  Any idea's of nice places that aren't too expensive to help build up a nice professional man wardrobe?


{5}
I had dinner with my sister Annie this week.  She is getting married this October, and I'm so excited her and her future hubs will be living in the local area.  I'm already loving that all our future kids will be able to grow up together and be close.  It's funny but I feel like we have so much more in common and get along better in life now that were both kind of on the same path now; working, marriage, how to make it all work, etc.  I mean we never fought or didn't get along, but I feel like we're actually closer because of our current life situations.  I'm actually 5 years older so sometimes growing up it felt we weren't as close because of where we were in life.  But since we've gotten older, we have grown closer...she's my fashion consultant, another closet to raid through, and one great listener. 
Sisters. Sisters. There were never such devoted sisters...('White Christmas' reference:)



{6}
I am slowly becoming a cook...very. slowly.  This week, I tried out another Weight Watcher recipe: Bubble-Up Enchilada Casserole.  
 Here's the link to the recipe.  Very easy to make!!  Take a 1-1 1/2 of turkey meat and brown and drain it.  Then add enchilada sauce and tomato sauce.  Then cut into 1/4 refrigerator biscuits.  You pour the meat and sauce mixture into a casserole dish and mix in the quartered biscuits.  Then bake at 350 for 25 minutes.  Pull out the dish and sprinkle cheese on top and let it bake for another five minutes so the cheese is all nice and melted.

Final result??  Jim loved it but I thought it was a little salty, maybe too much enchilada sauce??  I
 just be doing something right this week, cause I'm down 2.1 at WW!  Woot woot:)
Just. keep. working.
{7}
I know living in an apartment means you have to deal with the people who live above you (because we're on the first floor), but wow.  The guy living above us is about to get another noise compliant.  I have no problem with folks who get all geaked up for sports; BUT at 1:00am when you awaken either me and/or both my husband that's not really pleasant.  Last time we complained he was vacuuming at 2:00am...I'm all about being neat and tidy, but at 2:00am it is really not ideal.  Unless you wanna see Jim bust open a major can of whoop a$% then go ahead an be my guest.  Sorry for the sass, but I'm a light sleeper and I already sleep with ear plugs...hoping I can be nice about it and he can handle himself better at wee early times in the am.

Happy Weekending :)
  
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