Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Weekend

I'm posting a weekend update on a Wednesday. I know, I know! 

Let's reminisce, shall we?

Friday:
Brandon was in a wedding in New Jersey, so I took him to the airport on my way to work. Our office closed early, so I took my happy self to Sonic for a happy hour Diet Dr Pepper. Do I drink sodas that often? No. But man did a Diet DP sound super good. 


I was worn out from the week when I got home, so I crawled into bed to watch "North America." Oliver was hanging out with me, and when they started showing the little prairie dogs and their goofy noises, Oliver was so intrigued and couldn't turn himself away from the TV. Hilarious!

Later that night, I got a 1 1/2 hour massage and it. was. heavenly. 


Saturday:
I can never really sleep when Brandon's out of town, so I was up bright and early. I cleaned the entire house, ran some errands and had a mini little spa day at home. 

I bought this hair masque for my hair and absolutely loved it. It smells amazing and made my hair soft for days. I use this face mask (with apple cider vinegar) and it cleans my pores out like no other. And, this is my new favorite nail polish for summer. 


Sunday:
I went over to my in-law's in the afternoon for some pool time. It was perfect because it wasn't too hot in Texas yet -- which we all know is right around the corner. #105degrees


Monday:
It was finally time to pick Brandon up from the airport!!! He was dead tired, so we just relaxed all day. I made my dad's burgers* (affectionately called "Ben's Burgers") and Brandon grilled them. They are so good. 

{And disclaimer: this is Brandon's plate! I can barely eat half of one.}


That night, we crawled into bed to watch "The Bachelorette." Are y'all watching?! 

It makes me totally sad to see guys on there younger than me. I officially feel old. And the doctor? Creep! And the guy that kept asking her to go in the Fantasy Suite? Ick!!! 

Anyway, I promise I won't go this long without posting again! :)

*Ben's Burgers

Ingredients
1. 2 lbs. ground beef 
2. 1 pkt. Lipton Onion Soup Mix
3. Worcestershire Sauce {enough to moisten the mixture, but not too much}
4. Sliced cheese 

Directions
1. In a large bowl, mix together first three ingredients well. 
2. Using a spatula, spoon mixture into a hamburger press (or just roll mixture into balls in your hand). Using your thumb, press a little indention into the middle of the burgers. 
3. Heat on high, direct heat for about 9 minutes. {Give or take depending on your "done" preference.} Add cheese near the end of grilling time and let melt. 
4. Serve! 

These are seriously my favorite burgers, and nothing compares at all when grilling at home!


Friday, May 24, 2013

What We Ate This Week

Monday:
We had sweet friends have food delivered to our house, which was the sweetest thing ever after the day we had. Thank you, Belinda and PJ! 

Tuesday:


This was really easy and very yummy! I have a confession to make: I have never used a food processor before this recipe. We got one at a wedding shower about three years ago and it'd been sitting, unused, beneath my cabinet. Well, now I'm hooked! The sauce on this was to die for, and I could've made a meal out of that if I wasn't cooking for a man, too. :)

Wednesday:


Brandon just loves these, and they're really pretty healthy! I love the filling of these bad boys, and you could honestly make it and use it in taco salad, in regular tortillas, etc. 

Thursday:



PW has a great way of making salmon {take a peek at the link above} and it always, always comes out perfect. And the orzo? It's such a guilty pleasure. I try to tell myself it's somewhat healthy because of the asparagus, but yeah, wishful thinking. 

Hope y'all had a great week and a fabulous Memorial Day weekend!

Remember that Memorial Day is to honor those who have lost their lives serving our great nation. So thankful for those who have gone before to protect the freedoms we so enjoy. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Graduation Gifts

It's that time of year: graduation. Dun, dun, dun. 

I never, ever know what to buy graduates, and I figured many of you might not, either. So, I put together a {hopefully} helpful list for you! 



1. Gift cards: These are always a great choice so graduates can buy exactly what they want. My favorite places are Target, The Container Store and Crate & Barrel



2. Beach Towels: Maybe it's just me, but I can never seem to have enough beach towels. These are good for college grads, because who doesn't need one, especially when you're hitting the pool? Love the monogram/name on it, too, because there will never be any mix-ups with the roommate on whose is whose. Pottery Barn has good monogrammed beach towels. 



3. Jon Hart Design Dopp Kits: This is always my go-to graduation gift. In fact, I bought one for my husband when he graduated college and one for my oldest brother when he graduated from high school last year. They are durable, last forever and I really, again, love the monogram. (Can you tell I'm from the south?! As Reese Witherspoon said, "If it ain't movin', monogram it!")



4. Vera Bradley Zip ID Case: This makes it so easy to stick your student ID, driver's license, debit/credit card and anything else necessary when going from class to class to prevent having to carry a purse. It also works well for going out for the same reason. Everything necessary is in this little wristlet! 



5. Monogrammed towel wraps: I used mine every.single.day. my freshman year because Baylor makes you live in the dorms, and said dorms have community bathrooms. I also love the touch of a monogram on it, too. The Pink Monogram has some really cute ones. 



6. Laundry Kit: When I graduated from high school, I had a lady give me a laundry hamper, a delicates mesh wash bag, a bottle of laundry detergent, dryer sheets and a huge thing of quarters. {Again, Baylor has dorms, so dorms = miniature laundromat.} I still remember that gift to this day because I thought it was so clever and nice! And I had free laundry for a good few months! 


Do you have any favorite graduation gifts to give {or receive}? 

PS: Amber featured my tweet on her blog today, so go check it out! And if you're not following me on Twitter, why not!? (@britt_whit) #shamelessplug

Monday, May 20, 2013

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Weekend {Warning: Lots of Pictures!}

Happy Sunday! 

I'm so sorry I haven't posted in a few days. Last week was some week {I'll post more in the coming days} and I just couldn't bring myself to blog. 

Anyway, we had an amazing weekend; one that we both needed so much. It was full, yet fun. And I'm sitting here on my bed, exhausted as all get-out, but my heart is smiling thinking of the precious time we spent with amazing friends. 

Friday:
My best friend in the entire world, Lindsey, and her husband drove up from Houston for the weekend. Lindsey and I have been best friends since before we can even remember {no, but seriously}. She is truly a sister to me, and I can't explain in words how thankful I am for her friendship and blessed by it. 

She's one of those friends that I don't have to explain anything to {because she already knows the backstory}, she calls my grandparents what I call them {Nana, Pah, Grammy, Grumpy...} and if possible, we talk on the phone every single day. 

Anyway, they got here early Friday afternoon, and we just hung around the house catching up until Brandon got home. Then, we had dinner at one of our local favorites, 7 Salsas


After dinner, we came back to the house and just drank wine and talked while the boys played video games. {Heavy sigh for the video games. ;)} 

Saturday:
We all slept in, and I woke up to Brandon fixing breakfast! He made pumpkin pancakes, scrambled eggs, coffee and turkey bacon. {Deeee-ricious, right, Linds?}

We took our time getting ready, and then spent the majority of the afternoon at the Dallas Arboretum, per Lindsey's request. In my five and a half years living in Dallas, I have never been. Insane! I have no idea why.


It's sooooo beautiful. 



We just wandered, admiring the flowers, trees and gorgeous landscape. 




If we would've planned ahead, we so would have done a picnic on the big main lawn. 


Someone was having a wedding on the grounds. How gorgeous of a setting would this be to say, "I Do?!"



After the Arboretum, we had lunch at Terrilli's
{If you go during lunch, order the chicken club sandwich and pasta salad. It is to die for! Or maybe we were just really hungry. Probably both. Ha!}

Then, we came home and we all took long naps. It was amazing. There's nothing I love more than a nap when it's sunny outside and cool and quiet inside. 

Later, we got freshened up and went to the Rangers game! 


It was the perfect Texas night for the game, too. Not too hot with a nice cool breeze. Ahh.


Sunday:
They got up early to have brunch with her brother, his wife and their little girl, so we kept sleeping. You know you're good friends when... 

We went to church, had lunch at a little dive Italian restaurant, and came home to do some cleaning. Right in the middle of drying sheets and towels, our dryer broke. It was my parents' old dryer and was about 20+ years old. She made it through life at my parents', two of my apartments and this house for about six months before giving out. Way to go, Maytag! Ha!


{Our old washing machine broke on a Sunday, too! The irony...} So, we drove ourselves to Best Buy and had to buy a new one. Sigh. I'm very thankful that we were able to do that, because I am very well aware there are people who can't. 

After that, we hightailed ourselves back home to go to our church's semi-annual meeting. It's a potluck supper {of course, we're Baptists!} and I made my mom's "Chocolate Yum-Yum*}. I think they liked it. :) 


Finally, we got home and did some gardening and a bit of yard work. We picked up cilantro, basil and catnip {for Oliver!}, and I planted them in little planters outside. 

Currently, we have more basil, mint and jalapeƱos growing, which I love. 


Brandon randomly came home with the jalapeƱos a couple weekends ago, and I kept asking him why, since neither of us really like spicy food and I don't ever cook with it. He was like, "Well, I thought, 'why not?'" Only my husband. Anyone want to make me some salsa!? :)

Have a great week, y'all!

*Chocolate Yum-Yum

Ingredients 
1 box brownie mix {don't use fudge brownies}
2 containers extra-creamy Cool-Whip
1 box chocolate Jell-O pudding mix
1 package Heath Bar pieces

Directions
1. Make brownies according to package directions and bake.
2. Make chocolate pudding according to package directions and let set in refrigerator. 
3. When brownies have cooled and pudding has set, later in large clear bowl: crumbled brownies, chocolate pudding, Cool Whip, Heath Bar pieces. Repeat; the final layer should be more Heath Bar pieces. 
4. Keep cool in refrigerator until ready to serve. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

What I'm Loving Wednesday: How I'm Sleeping

I haven't really been sleeping lately. After a week of being extremely grumpy, crying at the drop of a hat because I was so tired and being just mentally and physically exhausted, I decided to take control of my own sleep habits. 

So, as a "What I'm Loving Wednesday," I'm sharing the things I'm loving that help me sleep. 




1. Walgreen's Brand Lavender Epsom Salt: These smell so great. Epsom Salt is awesome for drawing toxins out of your body, which also makes you feel very relaxed. I'll just sit in the bath for about 15-20 minutes to relax, draw out toxins and smell the soothing lavender. 

2. Dr. Teal's Soothe & Sleep Foaming Bath: I picked this up on a whim at the grocery store on Sunday and I'm so glad I did. Along with the Epsom salts, our entire bathroom smells like a lavender field {ha!}. I also use this as a bath gel for extra relaxation. 

3. Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Tea: This probably does absolutely nothing for me, but I like to think it does. :) When I get out of the bath, I make this tea and sip it while I'm in bed before we turn the lights out. The smell is soothing, and apparently works as a mild tranquilizer and sleep inducer, per Dr. Oz, so I just keep telling myself it's working. 

4. ZzzQuil: Now, I don't advocate for this every single night, but when I need a really good night's sleep and don't want to wake up at all. I typically wake up 2-3 times a night anyway, so I like to use this to stay asleep. 

5. Turning Off Technology: This week I have really tried to be in bed at 9:30 p.m. so I can be asleep by 10 p.m. Putting down my iPhone and/or computer when I get in bed has really helped and, as dumb as it sounds, I haven't had any dreams about people I've seen on my Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/blog feed all week. :) 

Do you have any proven methods that help you fall -- and stay -- asleep?

Monday, May 13, 2013

House Tour {almost done!}

While we still have miles to go {Amy, come help me!}, I decided on a whim tonight...oh, about 10 minutes ago...to do a mini little house tour on the blog tonight. Why? Because it's Monday and I've got nothin' for ya.

We still have to add a little accessories here and there, buy a bigger rug for the living room, find new lamps for the living room and get curtains for the kitchen...but we're almost there. 

So, without any further adieu, our {almost-finished} house:

The day we closed. Look at that awful yard!



Living room 
{Yes, we were watching DVR'd "Saturday Night Live." Ha!}


More living room 
{Hi, Oliver in his bed and his feather toy in the blanket basket.}


Kitchen 
{Hi, Crock Pot!}


More kitchen, looking into living room 


Hallway, front door, dining room 


Dining room
{I hate that right corner...}


Guest bedroom 
{Still needs "more," but I'm not sure what yet.}


Guest bath 
{On the right side of the collage...I just didn't take another photo. Ha!}

Master bedroom
{Still need a new bench, accessories for the hutch and something for above the hutch with our massive ceilings. Oh, and hi, Oliver.}


More master bedroom 


Backyard


More backyard 


So, as you can see, we still have miles to go, but I'm pretty happy with it for the time being! Especially considering it's our first house and we've only lived here for eight months!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day + Weekend

Happy Mother's Day to all the lovely mamas in my life, but especially to my mom and mother-in-law. 


You both have taught me so much about love, wifehood and sacrifice. 

To my mother-in-law, I love Brandon because of you. Thank you for raising such a wonderful son. 

To my mom, thank you for being the mom I needed. I'm so glad that God chose you to be that special person. Thank you for being not only my mom, but my friend. 

"We love because He first loved us..." -1 John 4:19


Also? While I know today is all about celebrating mom, please don't forget the ladies who desperately want to have babies and are having difficulties; those who have lost precious little ones; or those who have been told that pregnancy isn't an option. It's a beautiful day to celebrate, but always remember that everyone's circumstances aren't the exact same as yours. If you know any of these women, just hug them today and let them know they're loved.

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On to the "weekend" portion of this post, we had a pretty boring one.

(All I can hear is my mom saying, "Only boring people are bored." Ha!) 

We took our concealed handgun license (CHL) written and shooting exam all.day.long on Saturday. And when I say "all day," I truly mean it. It was a 10-hour course. Yes, you read that right: 10 HOURS...8 a.m. to 7 p.m. #iamstillexhausted


Both of us passed both tests, but yours truly made a 100 on the written portion. Ahem. :)

So afterward, we went to a little bar and grill by our house to celebrate with a giant hamburger and beer. Hey, we deserved it! 


Also? My husband totally knows how to motivate me. I was so not into getting up at 6 a.m. ON A SATURDAY {for the love} and laid in bed until the last possible second before we had to leave the house. {Totally unlike me.} 

So, to get my hiney out of bed and actually motivated to test well yesterday, he says:

"Brittany, if you pass this test, you'll get an hour massage. If you make an 'A' on it, you'll get an hour and a half massage." 

I bounded out of bed, obviously
(My co-workers better be laughing at the "obviously" reference right about now.)

And not only did I pass that test, I made a 100! So looks like an hour and a half massage is calling my name. 

Happy Sunday, y'all! 

Friday, May 10, 2013

What We Ate This Week + "Stuff"

Holy cow, y'all. It's Friday. I haven't posted since Tuesday. We've been dealing with a lot of "stuff" this week. Life's hard sometimes, you know? 

Anyway, here's what we ate this week: 



Like I said, this was some week, so I honestly used what I had on hand. Instead of rice, I used quinoa, and instead of red bell peppers, I used orange. Hey, whatever works, right?! This is such a great, easy standby meal. 



We both enjoyed this. Again, super easy...especially when you keep frozen chicken breast strips on hand and can zap those babies in a heartbeat. 
Again, I totally used what I had: instead of grape tomatoes, I just diced a regular tomato; left out the red onion; and used an entire container of goat cheese because - have I mentioned it before? - WE LOVE GOAT CHEESE. {Too much with the all caps?}

{And a Corona Light...ahem.}


Alright. About this. 'Twas good, but it just needed...more. Like quinoa maybe? It was fresh, but I just needed a tiny but more substance to it. 
Oh, and another thing? Don't use imitation crab. For the love of everything, don't. If/when I make this again, I'll be using fresh lobster or even chicken. Seriously. #wifeyfail

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Speaking of the-week-that-forever-shall-not-be-named-again, Brandon came home with a bouquet of flowers. I love him. 

Can I tell y'all a funny story? Don't judge me, mmmmkay? 


When we were dating, he would either have flowers sent to me from a florist {point one for Brandon!} or he'd stop by the grocery store and bring me some when he was just thinking about me. But when he'd bring them home from the grocery store, they'd still be in the cellophane they give you. Now, DO NOT JUDGE ME, but I hate that cellophane those come in. 

So, I politely said to him, "Did you know if you ask them, the grocery floral department will wrap the flowers in tissue paper for you?" He looked at me like, "Did you totally just say that to me?!" Ha! But, it's a little known fact that they'll do that! You buy a thing of flowers for $9.99 and they'll wrap it in pretty tissue paper and tie it with a ribbon for free. Looks much better, right!? 

Oh, and if you're having a craptastic week, just give a cat a bath. It will make you laugh, I promise. :) 


{ETA: We didn't give Oliver a bath just to make us laugh. He was disgusting from playing in the mud in our new backyard. PETA, don't come after me, please. Kthanks.}

And finally {because what could be more random than this post?}, these are my new favorite work shoes, which I found from Hillary's blog


I told my sweet co-workers about them, and now they have them, too! Gotta share the comfortable shoes love! 

Have a great weekend, y'all.