Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wicked

     Wicked is in town this week! I honestly didn't even know they were in town until a couple of weeks ago. I love musical and plays but I am not one to spend money on them. While traveling and have pictures is one thing, I just feel like I've wasted money with nothing to show for it with concerts, plays, games, etc. I don't judge others, this is just why I have a hard time spending money on these things. Jason feels the same way, so I was extra surprised when he was shopping for Wicket tickets online the other night! He knows        I've wanted to see it for some time. If you go to the actual site where the performance is being held, the show is sold out. But, there are tons of tickets on Craigslist. What is so frustrating is the 99% of the tickets are from dealers. And, they have the prices starting at $200 each. Seriously, the cheapest tickets I saw were $193 a piece. I know this is not how much good seats actually cost if you bought them from TPAC.
     It actually really makes me mad that companies would do this but then again, maybe there are people who would pay that? Not I of course! I just remind myself that it's always the same with things like this. Companies do this because…THEY CAN! Oh the joys of greed. It's the same thing with college textbooks. They are so expensive because they can be.
     On another note, I thought I'd leave you with some funnies. These made me laugh this week!




Sadly, this is probably true for many Americans.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Pumpkin Crescent Rolls

If you are tired of my pumpkin recipes, then disregard this post! I have been on a huge pumpkin kick and have put on the lbs to prove it! 

I made this recipe for Book Club and they turned out pretty good. If you don't like pumpkin very much, this has very little pumpkin taste. You can put more or less pumpkin if you'd like. 
Here is where I found the recipe (pinterest). 

video


video

——I am fully aware how amatuer these videos are. My dad had a Flip sent this week and I have been having fun with the ease of it! That means you might see some more corny videos!

Friday, October 14, 2011

OCM

     I happened to see a tweet that piqued my interest last week. A local mom in her late 30s mentioned that she needed a new skin care regimen. I love anything and everything makeup and skincare. I was a Mary Kay (GASP!) consultant for eight years and honestly did enjoy it. I have no desire to ever sell anything like that again, however, I feel I learned a lot about the subject and am grateful for those years. I still tell people that I learned more in MK about people and communication skills then I think any classroom could ever teach.
 I am digressing.
      Back to the point. I also am mid 30s and have just accepted the fact that I will never have beautiful skin. There, I said it! HA! I'm okay with that. I am going to do everything I can to take care of it though. I am convinced that my problem skin is the result of doing too much to try to fix it: too many harsh cleansers, toners, and tons of acne gels and spot treatments. Its especially harder now that I am aging and my skin is getting a little less oily. The same things I have been using for years now are not working anymore!
     While my skin hasn't been that bad, I don't love it and would love for it to just be a little more fresh. This is where the Oil Cleansing Method (OCM) comes in. I have NEVER heard of this and was not too keen on the idea at first, being that I have oily/combo skin. I don't put oil on my skin - ever. The more I read the more I realized that maybe that is my problem. I could add certain oils to my skin that will help with specific problems. I read a lot of information on several different sites and tried one concoction tonight. I'll let you know in several weeks if I like it. I will be honest and say I'm not expecting anything big, but these are pretty much household products and I feel much better about them being on my skin.
     You can read more about the different oils and their purposes here or here among a few other places you can Google.  I'm going to tell you what I did and I'll see in a few days if I need to alter it any. I used 2oz of Castor Oil, 1oz of Grapeseed Oil, 1oz EVOO and about 10 drops of Tea Tree Oil. I poured all of this in a 6oz plastic travel bottle I bought from Target. I shook it a little to blend it and voila. Done. I read that Castor Oil is said to be good for skin problems, and is said to pull out the bacteria from your pores. EVOO is a moisturizer. It is suggested if you have drier skin to switch these ratios. You can start with 3:1 parts of EVOO and Castor Oil. I switched out one of the EVOO parts for Grapeseed Oil which is supposed to be a light conditioner for the skin that will not clog pores. It was suggested for oily skin. The Tea Tree is for acne or blemish prone skin.  I poured about a quarter size amount in my hands and massaged all over my face, for about a good minute. I then got a wash cloth as hot as I could stand it and laid down with it on my face for a minute (more like 30 sec). Supposedly like a quick steam for your face to open the pores. I wiped off the oil while repeatedly rinsing the cloth after each wipe. I read that it is important to get all the oil off if you have oily skin so I think I might have rinsed too much. My skin actually felt a little tight and dry after. I just rubbed a light amount of the Grapeseed Oil on my face with wet fingers. The water helps it to absorb. The suggestions I read said you can do this morning or night or both. It does take makeup off great, too. I used my normal MK firming eye cream because I am a major nazi about eye creams!
     I'll keep you posted! Let me know what you think about it. Is this something you would try?

ALSO- I know nutrition is just as important for your skin. I just know more about this area! Plus, it's the easier part in my opinion!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Latte


I saw this recipe on Pinterest and had to try it. I could drink one of these from Starbucks everyday. I don't because they are so overly priced it's rediculous! Nevertheless, I was excited to try these. I think they turned out pretty darn good. I followed the directions (I normally don't, I know it's silly) but this would be very easy to tweak however you want. 
You can see the recipe on THIS BLOG


I used the bleder to make it frothy and it worked fine. Next time I will probably add more sugar and make my coffee a little stronger. Maybe for Christmas I'll get an espresso machine! 


My version…because I'm too lazy to make the whip look  pretty. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Kisses From Katie

I've been following her blog for some time now. This is interesting and inspiring.

Monday, October 10, 2011

25 Ways to wear a scarf

I'm so ready for cooler, scarf weather. I saw this on Pinterest and will be watching it over and over in slow motion; many days I'm sure!

Enjoy...




Sunday, October 9, 2011

the Dress

 I don't normally take pictures of myself and post them all over for the heck of it. I found a comical reason for this post.

I have been wanting a cute dress to wear with my boots for the fall. I know you've all seen the style I'm talking about; the Taylor Swiftish look. And yes, I know I'm not 19 or 20 or however old she is. I'd like to think mid thirties can still get away with this style. But, someone said a funny thing at church this morning. 

I was actually thinking of taking a picture so I could text it to my sisters and show them my "Taylor Swift for Big Girls" look. I didn't do that. The ironic thing was an older gentlemen at church this morning asked me if I thought Taylor Swift's style influenced fashion at all. Uh. Duh. Obviously it does. I think he was trying to be a smarty pants. But oh well. I did tell him, "yes," I think her style does influence fashion and I know I'm not 19 anymore! He was nice and laughed about it but I thought it a little comical that he asked me that, in a serious tone.

On the other hand, I did get a lot of compliments. I don't know if I'll be wearing this dress again anytime soon because the little (and I mean very little) black slip underneath is way too tight. I kept pulling it down all morning. Not comfortable. Nor is the feeling of fabric on my lower cheeks when sitting because the dress is too short. Blech. 

Sunday, October 2, 2011

PUMPKIN COFFEE CAKE

Last week I downloaded a free mini-book of different recipes for pumpkin. There are many that I can't wait to try. Of course I'll have to do lots of delivering to friends or else I will eat more than my fair share! I wanted to make Pumpkin Chocolate Chip muffins a couple of weeks ago and I only had a large jar of pumpkin. I made it anyways and had Grace delivering plates of muffins to several different neighbors! I'm sure they thought I was crazy! Those muffins turned out pretty good if you ate them immediately. I didn't seem to think they were as good the next day. 
Sooo...
This morning I decided to try the Pumpkin Coffee Cake. I will say, I was pleasantly surprised. It was not as pumpkin tasting as I like, but still wonderful and fallish! 

I don't like having to use three different bowls. Just more stuff to wash.  But I kind of had to with this recipe because it was layered.

Before baking.  This is totally a Laurie thing. I forgot all about adding the butter to the streusel. I ended up just melting  and pouring some on top after this picture!

YUM!
Pumpkin Coffee Cake

1/2 c. plus 1/3 c. butter, softened and divided
3/4 c. plus 1/3 c. sugar, divided
4 eggs, divided
1 t. vanilla
2 c. all purpose flour
1 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1 c. sour cream ( I didn't have quite a cup and added some vanilla greek yogurt)
1 15oz. can pumpkin
1 t. pumpkin pie spice (or use your own pumpkin spices)
1. c. brown sugar, packed
2 t. cinnamon
1 c. chopped nuts ( I used pecan pieces)

Blend together 1/2 c. butter, 3/4 c. sugar and 3 eggs until creamy; add vanilla. Mix in flour, baking powder and baking soda. Add sour cream; set batter aside. 
Combine pumpkin, remaining egg and remaining sugar; stir in pumpkin pie spice and set aside.
Prepare streusel by combining brown sugar, remaining butter, cinnamon and nuts; set aside.
Spray 13"x9" baking dish with non-stick vegetable spray. Spoon in half the batter; top with half the streusel, then ALL the pumpkin mixture. Spread on remaining batter then top with remaining streusel mixture. 
Bake at 325 degrees for 50 minutes to one hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 
Makes 15 servings.

-I baked for exactly 50 min but would suggest about 55 min. The batter around the pumpkin mixture could have cooked a little longer.

ENJOY!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

School

I read yesterday about a 31 days of … basically it's 31 days to whatever you feel like you can write about for 31 days. For a brief moment I  pondered if I really could write about something for 31 days. At this point in my life I feel like I could write about proper etiquette in different situations. That is about the only thing I could think of that I had enough to say about! It might have something to do with weddings, showers, graduations and babies that seem to happen all the time. Not to mention I have LOTS  of opinions. But…

I'm a full time student and let's face it. I know you completely understand why I can't commit to blogging for 31 consecutive days. I'll tuck that away for another time. I do enjoy blogging but it's been tough with school. I don't have to explain. But I will tell you about my semester so far.

Freshmen Biology. This is the second and only science I have to take and I saved it for last on purpose; I hate  dislike science. I honestly didn't even pass chemistry in high school. Albeit, I'm an adult now and a totally different student than I was in high school. I still was not looking forward to this biology course. It doesn't help when your classmates ALL say that this specific professor is tough. Great.  After one month I have been pleasantly surprised. I sit in class fascinated most days as I'm learning more about cells and genetics. It truly is miraculous the way our bodies are made up! So, it's definitely not as bad as I thought and I got an 82 on the first exam. I'm a-ok with that and I'm just gonna keep doing what I'm doing. Show up for class, take good notes, and study for several days before each exam.

Survey of World History I (this used to by World Civilization). This is my only online class. So far my online classes have been pretty easy and they have worked well with my schedule. This is a course for my major and I can't believe how much reading is involved. I'm majoring in history, and if the rest of college is like this,  it's going to wear me out and I definitely won't be able to attend full time. Even now I'm behind on reading. I'm hoping it won't hurt me too bad on our first exam in a couple of days. We'll see. I do thoroughly enjoy the reading, it's just A LOT!

British Literature. This class has been awesome so far. We read a story, watch the movie. Read a story, watch the movie.  So far we have watched "The Man Who Would Be King" and "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" (Jack Palance version). I actually called my brother after the first movie and said, "you have to watch this movie, I think you'll love it!" It was an old Sean Connery and Michael Caine movie. It truly was a great story. Our professor has reiterated since day one of class how important stories are. This is the theme of the class.
I actually really enjoy this professor as he has a great sense of humor and is very personable. He showed a clip of this woman one day on youtube. This was a christian comedian whom I have heard of for years in the church. I thought, what the heck is he doing showing this? What's the point? I even almost blurted out how funny she was but how annoying her voice was (that was almost my thinking out loud that I do way too often). I am so glad I kept my mouth shut because a guy behind me said, "that's your wife, huh?" My professor of course told us it was his wife and I was shocked. I could not believe it! I called my mom, sister, and a couple of my friends after class and told them the story. They all knew who she was and thought it was ironic that Chonda Pierce's husband is my professor! …click on her name for the cute clip we watched.

Political Science. I love this class, even if it is my 7:30 −10:30am on Friday morning class! It's just a fun class with lots of discussion about government. I feel like I'm learning much that I didn't know and am also seeing some things in a different light. Our professor is probably about 70 years old. I believe he has a couple Master's degrees and a Doctorate. He's an educated man, of course. He told us all at the beginning that he only does two exams and they are both take home. I can live with that! He also told us to be thinking of where we want to eat breakfast one morning because he will treat us all once this semester! I'm hoping to take the second part of this course with him next semester.

All paper writing aside, I'm enjoying this semester. I do feel like I am not able to do as much with the kids as I would like so I might slow down next semester. I'm clearly the oldest in all my classes with the exception of one older man in my Biology class. In my Pol Sci class yesterday Dr. Kraus said that he was going to write me a recommendation to  law school. I cracked up! I definitely don't want to work in that field. While I would like to dress up cute and wear cute heels to an office everyday, well, okay, maybe not everyday. It does sound nice though! Ha. That's a whole different story.

I'll have some pics next week. The kids and I are working on some fall crafts this week during the break!