There are some days when I feel like I've lost something. Time. Friendships. Love. And so many times these feeling are unexplainable. At least to me.

Today is not one of those days.

Two pairs of my friends are getting divorces. I love all four of them so much. Agh, I hate divorce. I hate pain and frustration and lack of appreciation for spouses. And bad choices. And taking people for granted.

It absolutely breaks my heart to it's core. I have forged deep relationships with these people and I feel so...lost. yeah, I think that describes what I mean. I want to weep and mourn the loss of these once-amazing friendships, but for some strange reason I can't let go. Or rather, I haven't given myself permission to grieve yet. That's probably more accurate.

My heart feels heavy.

This is what I'm listening to today:


This song (a happy version, folks) was played during my wedding by my brothers and cousin. It was beautiful, amazing, moving, and I will never forget the love I felt blossoming that day.

However, this was also the song played in another friends wedding. One of those couples I spoke of. I feel torn apart. I love these people and I also feel helpless (which is true).

So, there's me pouring out my heart today. Tomorrow I travel to, for the first time, NOLA. Should be interesting and tasty, if nothing else. I'll report back.

Things will work out and in a few weeks everything will feel "normal", whatever that is. Until then, this is me.




I love beets. Yes, I do. They are so humble. Don't you think? 

They're hairy, and ugly and root-ish. But that humility holds such beauty:

These yellow beets were so bright neon yellow, I had trouble focusing my eyes on them. 

And the red beet. Oh, that gorgeous red beet. I love how red beets stain my hands for days after I cook with them. 

Absolutely perfect. 

Plus they are delicious with roast chicken!



A little History...

I think it's time to let the blogospere know a little more about me. I like lists, so we'll do that sort of format.

-I am a California transplant to the fairly deep south
-I am in graduate school for School Psychology
-I live away from my husband because our schools are in different cities that are quite far away from each other.
-my favorite time of year is Christmas, but my favorite season is fall
-I love ice storms because when the power goes out and we have to cook on the campfire stove it feels like such an adventure!
-I love love love the beach.
-I play the cello and have been an Orchestra since high school
-I lived in Washington, DC on my own when I was 16
-the first time I talked to my husband I went home and told my mother I was never going to even date him because "all he could talk about was cars!" (look where that ended up...)
-I love Thai food more than any other (and it's naturally gluten and milk free! Woo hoo!)
-My favorite animated movies are Tim Burton and I LOVE THE MUPPETS!!!

Okay, that's good for now. Happy day!


Gluten Free Thanksgiving, Recipe Time

Oh man. I totally stumbled upon the mother load of recipes. Shauna Ahern of The Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef has done a HUGE post of allergy free recipes and invited tons of other food bloggers to put on their creative hats and try their hand at gluten-free Thanksgiving dishes, and those have all been hyperlinked. Hallelujah! Seriously, I am a much less stressed and happier person today because of her. The (now) infamous post:

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

Plus, if you make a recipe and leave a comment, you'll be signed up for some amazing prizes, including a KitchenAid Stand Mixer. Now get going and good luck!


Ugly Cry

I am an avid Weddingbee reader. Nevermind that I've been married for over a year now. I love it and I feel like I'm in some way connected to these girls. One of the bloggers was actually part of the Olympics this year and when I saw her (and her baby bump!) on the screen I started going crazy about it. My parents and J think I'm nuts.

Anyway, to the point. The girls always do posts about "The Ugly Cry Face". I'm not sure I've ever been aware of how my face looks when I'm crying, usually because I'm so upset at that point that I don't care. So, since I wasn't positive how this looked I went to the mighty Google. And guess what? I would say about 30 percent of the images were from Weddingbee posts. Funniest thing.

Short post today. Lots and lots of driving ahead.


I can't help myself.

So, I'm gluten free now. Most friends and family know this by now, but it still seems like I don't quite get the point. I know that eating gluten makes me feel foggy and like crap but I still let things go. It is hard, living in two places. I think I use that as an excuse sometimes. Like, my life is hard, I'm away from my husband, I can make an allowance for myself this one time. Except it's four times a day now.

Which obviously doesn't help the way I feel. I really don't need to let myself do that anymore.

I just had some sourdough rye bread. See, I don't listen. You know, maybe subconsciously I think gluten really isn't that bad for me because I wasn't positive on my blood test. I know that I feel better when I'm off of the wheat, but since my blood test was negative I think I can get away with it because it's "not that bad".

Yeah right. Tell that to my body.

So, getting to the point, I'm really nervous about Thanksgiving this year. J's family doesn't have acknowledged food allergies and is unbelievably southern, meaning Paula "the more butter the better" Deen food will be aflowin'. Not to mention the stuffing, pies, rolls, gravy (I love gravy!), etc. Okay, I'm allergic to milk too. So this is going to be interesting, to say the least. My mom has offered to bring a couple dishes that I can eat, but I don't want his family to be offended. I've really tried to not make a fuss about the culinary differences between our families, (and those are VAST, believe me) but this year seems different.

Oy vey. Sometimes I wish I knew yiddish. I think it would help me express myself more thoroughly.

On another note, I love, love, LOVE my dog. She is so freakin' cute. What's that? You want to see what she looks like? Well, all right then.

She is adorable. This was a few months ago, but she's still just as adorable. I let her on the bed. And lick the dirty dishes in the dishwasher. And on the couch to snuggle. J says not to do any of these things because he thinks it will spoil her. It just makes me love her more than I already do.

We had friends over to our house for the first time last night. We've had people over, but not for anything other than dinner. This was just plain fun, as in board game night. My fave! Here's the new game we played:

It was SO MUCH FUN! Let me tell you, if you love weird games that make you laugh your heart out, you'll love this one! We stayed up till two in the morning we were having so much fun. Well, we played Trivial Pursuit too (that win was stolen from us, I tell you! Stolen!). 

AND! It's almost Christmas. I don't know about you, but if I'm able to hold off on the Christmas music until Halloween I'm proud of myself. Didn't quite make it this year. I started in September. I just could not help myself. And since I can't help myself, here's a picture of what I wish my christmas could look like.
I want to live in a Dr. Seuss book. Or Madeline. I haven't quite decided yet.



Our newest adventure

This is the official announcement:


So, we're moving to Little Rock (eventually). We're going to start apartment hunting, but in the best of all worlds we'll find a lovely little house we can rent. Next year, however, I will still be here, married and living with my parents, so I can finish my school work. I thought it was only going to be one more semester, but it may be two (stinky faces to that). I will miss our cute first apartment, bad insulation and all :).

Short post today. Off to celebrate!


Save the Dates!

The save the dates are finally out! We tried for three days to get the address list to match with the clear print labels and we were up a tree, so Yours Truly hand-addressed every. single. one. Whew. My hand feels like it's run a marathon!

The picture that we took was on the beach in Carlsbad, California, when we were there for new years with my family. That place is so gorgeous and we had some amazing food! (We all know that's what vacations are all about anyway!)

We had such a wonderful time with everyone and enjoyed the sand between our toes and squishy sea slugs between our fingers! (we went tide pooling almost every night and found many a-sea slug, HUGE starfish, anemones, and a baby octopus, which was really cool!)

So, happy week, everybody. Hope you enjoyed the picture.



Engagement Announcement!

Ha! Our engagement announcement is in the paper today! Yipee! 

So, it finally feels real, like it's actually happening. It's not just "let's get those stun guns out and pick out some nice stuff," but "Oh my gosh, we've got an apartment, and a bed, and a lamp and we're gonna hafta pay bills on our own soon!"

....sooo, maybe this wasn't what we were looking forward to when we got engaged. Let's just stick to the nice stuff. lol. 

I tried to find a link on the newspaper site to the article, but it didn't happen. Oh well. Up next post: the Save the Dates!



DIY-ing it

So, now that we have someone doing our wedding invites for us, I am regretting it. Today I went to Hobby Lobby (the mother ship) and I decided I was going to make my grad announcements/party invites. I buy an heat embosser thingy (whatever it's called...), stamps, cards, vellum envelopes, embossing powder, and a calligraphy pen. Sheesh, I've gone crazy! But after playing around for a while with all my fun new toys, I love DIY! If only I had a Gocco I do my own invites! 

And then I go to weddingbee (I'm addicted, I know) and see a post by Miss Tiramisu about making her invites for....drum roll please...$2.70 each. Ouch. I have a sick feeling that is not what I'm going to be paying per invite. I am officially regretting my professional invite decision. And you know the biggest bummer?? I think I could do it better. I have access to awesome paper, I don't have terrible art skills; As long as I've got a Gocco, it could be brilliant! 

Alas, we shall have to endure the prof job. But, hehehe, I will be doing my STD's and everything else I can by hand! 

Onward, Captain DIY! To the embosser ship!




yes, yes, yes. I know it's October. I also know that it's time to start the Christmas music!

You see, John and I try really hard to not listen to christmas music 12 months out of the year. We. love. Christmas. Everything about it; the warm fuzzies one feels, the family, the good food, the stockings, the (only) time where everyone comes together and we can count on carols, our christmas eve feast, placing baby Jesus in his little raffia manger, the snow (at least sometimes in Arkansas), the travel, and presents! So we usually can squeeze it until october, and it's all downhill from here.

When John proposed (we'll get to that story in another post) he gave me a beautiful ornament as an engagement gift, so that we would have the first ornament to go on our tree when we get married. It was such a wonderful gesture, especially because of how much christmas means to us. 

So! Everyone: start your CD/XM/SIRIUS players and set to full speed christmastime!

christmas love,

Mr & Miss Christmas Tree


The Beginning...

This is our start into the blogosphere. We'll be keeping you updated on wedding plans and the beginning of our life together. 
Woo hoo!


okay, so the pictures double-posted, but I can't figure out how to get the repeats off. So, we'll have to deal. Hope you don't mind.   :)