Wednesday, May 29, 2013


The company I work for just celebrated its 50 year anniversary with an employee cupcake war. (I know! I know! We are just SO fun!!!) With nearly 30 entries and over 300 taste testers, the recipe below took the cake... literally! I about died when the girl told us it was from a box.  (shhhh... we aren't telling a lot of people that since I am pretty sure the rest of the contestants stayed up late the night before making them from scratch.)  Part of me was like "That is total crap!" but the more sensible part of me was like "Smart girl! Give me that recipe!"

(Photo credit: Gena Larson Photography)

Betty Crocker Lemon Poppyseed Muffin Mix
Lemon Creme (I used Duncan Heins)
Whipped Cream (or cool whip)
White Chocolate (I buy the bars in the baking section)

1. Bake muffins as directed.  Let cool.
2. Carve out a piece in the center.  (I used a potato peeler.)
3. Fill center with lemon creme.  (I filled a frosting bag and cut the tip off to fill them.)
4. Spread whipped cream on top.
5. Shave chocolate.  (I used a cheese grater.)
6. Dip and roll cupcake in the chocolate shavings.
7. Enjoy the cupcake and all its simplicity.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Remember when I said I would dream about the day that I got to bake and decorate my child's first birthday cake? Well, I was equally as excited about making a baby book. Because I am weird and usually refuse to buy things like this from a store, I made my own in shutterfly. Her "baby book" is actually made up of two books {0-6 months} and {6-12 months}.  I am just about done with the 6-12 month book, but decided to give you a peek at the 0-6 month book that was finished, printed and delivered months ago. I absolutely love it. (Once the book loads, click "Full Screen" on the top right to view the book larger.)

Monday, May 27, 2013


You can't be good at everything. The other day I was thinking about all of the the things I enjoy doing (you know, my interests) and it turns out I have A LOT of them. Then it started to give me a slight bit on anxiety b/c I know I will never (at least any time in the near future) have time for them all. The problem is (and always has been) I want to be good at everything and I mean EVERYTHING. And I don't just want to be good at everything, I want to be great at it. I want to be a great mother, a caring and supportive wife, a go-getter, a creative designer, a money maker, a furniture reupholsterer, a photographer, a gardener, a chef, a baker, a runner, a fitness freak, a blogger, a crafter, a seamstress, a buyer of all things organic and healthy and the list goes on and on. And yes, this does actually give me anxiety. That might be weird, but that is me. And Pinterest - you do not help my cause. After a nice long pinning session, my mind is even more jam packed with all the crafts I want to create and all the healthy meals I want to make. That is when I decided I just needed to pick the things I want to be good at at this moment in my life and just focus in on them. Right now I am going to be the best mother and wife I can be, focus on my design career, feeding my family good, healthy food and for the next four months or so, I will try and find the inner gardener in me. Oh, and I will always be a fitness freak and a go-getter. ;) My days of repurposing old furniture, being a seamstress and photographer are still to come, just not quite yet.

Now that feels a little better.  Sometimes I just need declutter my head.

On that note... here is an awesome new healthy recipe I tried yesterday. Onward with the eating healthy! ;)

Greek Yogurt and Honey Dijon Chicken Salad

1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast (cooked, cooled and cubed)
⅓ cup sliced almonds (or nut of your choice)
1 celery stalk, chopped
1 green onion, sliced
Handful fresh parsley, finely chopped
⅓ cup Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon real mayo
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons honey
Black pepper
¼ cup dried cherries (raisins or cranberries work well, too)

Mix the greek yogurt, mayo and mustard together first, then mix in everything else.  
Eat in a sandwich or with crackers.

(Original recipe from The Best Recipes Online.)

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


Blueberries, greek yogurt and oatmeal Power Muffins!

I found these on pinterest and finally got around to making them today.  They are delish! Only thing I changed from the original recipe was the flour - switched the white flour to whole wheat of course! ;)

makes 21 regular muffins 
  • no-stick cooking spray
  • 2 cups wheat flour
  • 1 cup oats–quick or regular oats, plain
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 12 ounces honey nonfat greek yogurt or 1 1/2 cups (Chobani)
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  1. Heat oven to 350°.
  2. Coat muffin tin with cooking spray or liners.
  3. Combine flour, sugar, oats, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl.
  4. Combine yogurt, eggs, butter, and vanilla in a second bowl.
  5. Fold yogurt mixture into dry mixture; stir to combine completely.
  6. Gently fold in blueberries.
  7. Spoon into muffin tins.
  8. Bake until top is golden and springs back when you gently touch it, 20-25 minutes.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Anna Maria Island, Florida

Last week we were on the BEAUTIFUL Anna Maria Island in Florida with my parents and brother.  My parents have been vacationing on the Island for over 35 years. They went there on their honeymoon and they will be celebrating their 35th wedding anniversary this month! My Grandma and Grandpa Andrews (who are no longer with us) have been going for years before that.  I have been going since I was two years old and we are now starting the tradition with Ellis at one year.  Let's just say our family has quite a few memories on the island.

The weather was mid 80s the entire time, our beach house was adorable and we got through the entire week without too much family disfunction. ;)  It was relaxing and the perfect vacation with a baby.  Every day we slept in, drank coffee by the pool, my mom watched Ellis while Logan and I went for our morning run, swam in the pool with Ellis, put Ellis down for her first nap, did a short day trip when she woke up (fruit farm tour, the Mote Aquarium, little shops around town, etc.), tried to get back in time for Ellis' second nap, grilled dinner at the house or went out for dinner, and ended almost every night with a walk on the beach once Ellis was down for the night.  It was wonderful to spend time with my family and so helpful to have my mom and brother there to help with Ellis.  One day we left her with my family and Logan and I went to Orlando to the Magic Kingdom.  It was so nice to have the day for just him and I since we rarely get alone time these days. 

For me,
It was a week without lists.  Lists - I. HAVE. THEM. EVERYWHERE - work lists, home lists, freelance lists, grocery lists, dinner lists, lists, lists, lists.  I needed a week without lists and I can tell it was just what the Doc ordered b/c I am feeling totally refreshed and ready to take on the world - more on that later.  Sometimes you just need some time away. Basically this quote sums it us:

Trip highlights - Having a beer on the Rod and Reel Pier and talking to locals, swimming with Ellis in the pool, the Mixon Fruit Farm, and bumming around town looking at all the little shops - this one was my favorite.  They also have a blog with recipes!  The store smelled AMAZING and there were samples of everything!

Lowlights (is that what I should call them?!)
#1 - THE. PLANE. RIDE.  I have some advice when traveling with a baby - DON'T DO IT! ;)  I am sure some parents have had a great experience when traveling with a child, but ours didn't go so smooth.  Had she been just a few months younger, I feel like it would have made a big difference.  She had to be moving at ALL times - jumping, touching, climbing (all over us), "talking" to the people in the seat behind us, arching her back and throwing a fit to get down off of our laps and oh, her random screams, for fun.  She is a pro.  The girl has some pipes!  So for two and a half hours Logan and I were sweating, getting climbed on, trying to control her screaming, and trying to feed her all while cramped in a tiny plane. We were hoping for a nap. Not a chance for that!!! Basically she looked at us and said - "Ain't nobody got time for dat!" kidding!  But if she could talk, that is totally what she would have said.

#2 - When the bank called us about one hour after we got in the Magic Kingdom and told us our credit card number was stolen and someone spend $2,500 in Great Britan.  I was like "C'mon!  Isn't this supposed to be the happiest place on earth!"  Grrrr.

Ok, now on to the pictures:  

Morning smiles the day we left

Wearing Mama's hat

First Airplane ride
I might look happy, but in my head I am thinking LAND THIS THING NOW AND GET ME THE HELL OUTTA HERE! STAT!

Our beach absolutely adorable beach house - The Coral Cottage!

The Beach

After a morning run

No room to pack toys, so kitchen utensils had to do.

Braiding back my bangs.  Jodie and Kate tried teaching me this technique a couples times and I kind of got it while on vacation. :) Now if the hair on my temples would just grow back.  I knew it would fall out after I had Ellis, but I thought it would grow back. sigh...

She looks so much like a little girl in this picture and not a baby.

Look at the Sea Lions Grandma!

Mixon's Fruit Farm

Pool Time:

This bird was VERY friendly.  He would show up and we would feed him bread.  No wonder he was so friendly. ;)

 The Rod and Reel Pier:

Ice cream!!!

The Spice Merchant and bumming around town:

Disney's Magic Kingdom

Around the beach house...