Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Meet Buddy

I surprised Kyle for his birthday by telling him we could get a puppy! So since the end of November we have been searching for the right puppy to adopt. Kyle stopped by Petsmart on Saturday and called me to come meet him there, saying there was a super sweet little puppy I had to meet. We decided he was a perfect fit for us and he became the newest member of our family. So meet Buddy...

Kyle and Buddy at Petsmart

He loves this bed, and the snowman under his head in this picture

Isn't he adorable?

Sleepy boy using the blanket as a pillow

He is a great puppy, loves to snuggle and play with his toys. He was a stray that got turned in to a animal shelter in Haltom City. We had to take him to the vet over the weekend, he has kennel cough and two ear infections but the medicine is helping him already. He LOVES my burlap tree skirt, wish I had a picture of him laying on it. I'm sure there will be many more pictures to come!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

What Do I Know of Holy

I think everyone has a song that can always speak to their heart no matter what is going on in their life.  I have a few but the one that always tugs at my heart is by Addison Road.  The song is called "What Do I Know of Holy"  A few years ago I played it for my girls group during a time of prayer, I just love the message it speaks.  It came on my Pandora station this morning and just felt lead to share it.

I made You promises a thousand times
I tried to hear from Heaven
But I talked the whole time
I think I made You too small
I never feared You at all No
If You touched my face would I know You?
Looked into my eyes could I behold You?

What do I know of You
Who spoke me into motion?
Where have I even stood
But the shore along Your ocean?
Are You fire? Are You fury?
Are You sacred? Are You beautiful?
What do I know? What do I know of Holy?

I guess I thought that I had figured You out
I knew all the stories and I learned to talk about
How You were mighty to save
Those were only empty words on a page
Then I caught a glimpse of who You might be
The slightest hint of You brought me down to my knees

What do I know of You
Who spoke me into motion?
Where have I even stood
But the shore along Your ocean?
Are You fire? Are You fury?
Are You sacred? Are You beautiful?
What do I know? What do I know of Holy?

What do I know of Holy?
What do I know of wounds that will heal my shame?
And a God who gave life "its" name?
What do I know of Holy?
Of the One who the angels praise?
All creation knows Your name
On earth and heaven above
What do I know of this love?

What do I know of You
Who spoke me into motion?
Where have I even stood
But the shore along Your ocean?
Are You fire? Are You fury?
Are You sacred? Are You beautiful?
What do I know? What do I know of Holy?

What do I know of Holy?
What do I know of Holy?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


It has been a busy few weeks and I have started writing about 3 blog posts only to get busy and forget to post them.  I thought I would update with pictures in a quick post cause pictures are really more fun than words right? ;)

Kyle won Rangers tickets, little did we know it was "Bark in the Park" day and we were in a section filled with barking dogs.  As if that wasn't distracting enough there was a shirtless drunk man sitting in front of us.  Thankfully we found a nice usher in a section by 3rd base who let us move seats and enjoy the game without all the distractions.

My birthday was two weekends ago and Kyle went all out to celebrate.  He made breakfast, we went to Spiral diner for lunch, and he grilled out steaks for dinner.  It was a perfect day!  Plus I got a raised garden kit so we are going to start our own vegetable garden which I am so excited about!

This was another one of my birthday gifts, stepping stones from our back door to the garage door.  It was something I've wanted since we moved in and Kyle & Andrew made it happen!  They worked very hard to get each one level and straight and I think they look awesome!
Most of my days have been spent with these two books.  I take the GRE test a week from today and I am still not feeling completely ready.  The good thing is I have already started school and don't need GRE scores to continue at this school.  However, I already signed up and paid the fee (not cheap!) and want to do good so I'm still studying.
My parents bought me this espresso machine for my birthday.  I love it!  I really don't miss going to work at 4:30 in the morning, or working 8 hour shifts day after day, but I did miss the delicious espresso that I would drink every day.  This machine is easy to use, makes a delicious shot of espresso and I think it looks pretty!  My parents are amazing and I'm so thankful for all they do for us!

There was also a really fun trip to Dave & Busters with my family for me & my mama's birthdays that I didn't capture.  I'm trying to be better about taking pictures, but sometimes I just forget.  It's been a fun couple of weeks!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

An update

Thought I would update you on this journey...

My last shift at Starbucks was two Sunday's ago and let me just say that was one of craziest day I've ever worked.  It was Mother's day and everyone wanted to take drinks to their mom/wife and no one knew what they wanted!  Nothing like going out with a bang!

The day before I left Kyle & I found out we had been approved for our new insurance.  This was something I had been worried about and was another way God showed me I just had to let go and trust him.

The day after I left work I found out my application to BH Carroll had been accepted!  I wasn't expecting to hear back until July but found out I was approved in time to start this summer!  So starting June 7th I'll be taking an online orientation class and learning all about this new amazing school.

I have been able to get some much needed rest and refocus on God and His plan.  I'm so excited for this journey and wanted to let you guys know all the amazing things happening already

Maker of it all
You provide it all
In You we live
In You we move
In You we have our being
You're glorious
You're holding us together all together 

Gungor "Brother Moon"

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Sunday nights

Growing up I would always have a hard time falling asleep on Sunday nights, I guess I would get anxious about the week ahead.  I would usually end up coming back downstairs and hanging out with my dad for awhile on Sunday nights, even throughout high school.  I am a planner which is the nice way of saying I know how to worry, and I'm good at it.  I would lay in bed on Sunday nights and think of all the things I have to do that week or the tests or the homework I didn't finish. 

Working, and especially opening shifts, brought back my sleepless Sunday nights.  Especially once I became a shift manager.  I would lay in bed and think about where I would position everyone in the morning, all the things I had to get done, then I would think if I fall asleep now I'll get 4 hours of sleep, etc.  There were many Sunday nights in the past few months where I only got an hour or so of sleep and felt it for the rest of the week.  I have countless pictures on my phone of scratches of paper like this where I have written down how I will run the shift that day. 

Today was my last shift at Starbucks and so for the first time in a long time Sunday night doesn't mean an early bed time filled with planning and anxiety.  Like I said I know how to worry and I'm good at it, I'm working on learning to fully and completely rely on God especially during this new journey.  It's incredible to see how He's working out the little details for us--like finding out yesterday that our health insurance is approved!  I'm thankful for this new journey and new season in life--one with more sleep and learning to fully trust God.

Before the throne of God above
I have a strong and perfect plea:
A great High Priest, whose name is Love,
Who ever lives and pleads for me.

My name is graven on His hands,

My name is written on His heart;
I know that while in heaven He stands
No tongue can bid me thence depart
No tongue can bid me thence depart.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

No Sugar. No Flour.

I know this sounds crazy but I'm going on two weeks with no (or very little) sugar and white flour.  I decided I needed to make a healthy change and had been reading about side effects from sugar consumption and decided this would be a good way to go.  I had been having trouble sleeping, probably averaging only 4 hours a night, had lots of headaches, and very sluggish. 

The first few days were really rough, I was grumpy and exhausted.  I was really surprised that I had any symptoms cause I didn't think I ate that much sugar but I soon found out that I did!  The third day was the hardest, I was having a hard time comprehending things at work and moving very slow.  Once I got through that day it's been much easier.  I have slept so good the past week and a half and have zero headaches.

I'm not saying no sugar is the way to go for everyone, it is an interesting subject to research though.  The amount of sugar our body needs to function is very little and the excess sugar slows our body down. 

Kyle has been such a good sport these past few weeks, he put up with my crabbiness and has been flexible about what we eat.  I have found delicious recipes including a Greek dip that I could live off of--I've made it twice in the past two weeks.  I eat it with some multi-grain chips, but you really could eat it with a fork. 

I will say work is the hardest place to avoid sugar, we have so many pastries & drinks that are delicious (and full of sugar) but I've been doing good.  I have my iced double espresso in the morning & bring two breakfast cookies.

Anyone else ever tried the no sugar way? 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Baked Chicken Nuggets

I'm not much of a fast food girl, but I love Chick-fil-a especially the chicken nuggets with Chick-fil-a sauce. It's my weakness.

Since we are trying to eat at home more, I decided to attempt to make baked chicken nuggets. And while they were in the oven, I whipped up my own version of Chick-fil-a sauce. They both turned out really good so I thought I would share the recipes:

Baked Chicken Nuggets
2 large chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces
Salt & pepper
2 tsp olive oil
6 Tbsp Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
2 Tbsp Panko
2 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese (the stuff in the green shaker worked great)

450 degree oven
Spray baking sheet

Put olive oil in one bowl and breadcrumbs, panko and parmesan in another bowl

Season chicken with salt & pepper, put in olive oil, then doing a few pieces at a time put in breadcrumb mixture. Make sure each piece gets fully coated.

Place on baking sheet, lightly spray the top with some non-stick spray

Bake 8-10 minutes then turn over and bake for 4 more minutes

Maddie & Kyle sauce

1/2 c honey mustard
1 tsp barbeque sauce
a squirt of regular mustard
Hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A new journey

Over the past few months I've felt a tug at my heart to take a leap of faith and trust God with my future. I wasn't really sure what this meant and just kept going through my regular routine. I felt run down, exhausted and unhappy when I got home from work which I had never felt before. I realized it was time for me to move on to what God had planned for me. Kyle and I sat down and talked about what this meant for our lives, and I decided to go back to school.

So here's the big news--I'm going to go back to school and get my Master's degree in Counseling! I have a lot of work to get there, applications, GRE test, essays, etc. but I am so excited to be on this journey. I have given my notice at work and I will be leaving in the middle of May. I want to be able to focus on this new journey and have energy to spend on the talents and passions God has given me.

God continues to show me that this is the right path for me and I am so blessed to have people in my life to encourage me and lift me up in prayer. I would love to know all the details ahead of time--I'm a huge planner--but that's not how trusting God works. I only know a tiny bit of this journey, I know the first step was giving my notice and starting applications and I have taken that step. I am learning to trust God and take it one step at a time, relying on Him and not my own strength.

6 You rejoice in this, though now for a short time you have had to struggle in various trials 7 so that the genuineness of your faith—more valuable than gold, which perishes though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 8 You love Him, though you have not seen Him. And though not seeing Him now, you believe in Him and rejoice with inexpressible and glorious joy, 9 because you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
1 Peter 1:6-9

Sunday, March 25, 2012


This past weekend we packed up and headed down to Austin for Kyle's brother's wedding. Kyle is the middle of three boys and this was his youngest brother's wedding, all three boys have gotten married in the past year and a half! We haven't been on a trip since the cruise so we were excited to get away for the weekend and decided to make the most of it!

On our way down we stopped at Common Grounds in Waco and got to meet up with Aarika and Kendra. I'm sad that I forgot to take any pictures while we were there, but we got to catch up on life, wedding planning, school, work, and everything. I love those girls and I was so glad they got to meet us there!

We got back on the road and our next stop was lunch, which Kyle had planned since he learned that Blake & Erika were getting married in Austin. Lunch was burgers at Mighty Fine. For those of you who know my hubby, you know his love for burgers. The burgers were delicious and the fries are awesome!

Back on the road--hit some traffic coming into Austin, but isn't that the 'Welcome to Austin' sign? haha, oh the traffic was awful all weekend! I guess that's what you get in Austin.
Made it to the hotel in just enough time to get changed and head out to the rehearsal dinner. Blake & Erika asked Kyle to officiate so this was his first wedding, and I think I was more nervous than he was. I wasn't nervous that he wouldn't do a good job, cause I knew he would. I was just imagining having to stand up in front of all these people with this incredibly important job of marrying two people and that was making me nervous. But that's why Kyle is the pastor and not me! haha.

After the rehearsal we headed to Salt Lick BBQ for the dinner, only some of the most delicious BBQ in the state of Texas. It took a little bit to get there since it's pretty much in the middle of nowhere but everyone seems to find it! Their parking lot is huge and we were there early and it was already getting crowded, but rightfully so. It was delicious, they brought out huge plates of meat, potatoes, coleslaw and bread. We ate way too much of that delicious food! And then had some blackberry cobbler with blue bell ice cream :) Again no pictures, probably cause we were too busy eating and having fun with family.

Friday night we decided to go see The Hunger Games since neither one of us could wait any longer to see the movie! So we went to Walmart and loaded up my purse with snacks (hey we are cheap okay! ha) and went to a movie theater right up the street from our hotel. I loved the movie, I thought they did a good job taking it from a book into a movie, there were some things that I missed but overall it was great!

We had most of the day Saturday to just hang out so we decided to go walk around downtown. We got some Starbucks, cause I can't go a day without my caffeine haha. Then we went over to the farmer's market that is set up on Saturday mornings. We had so much fun! They had all kinds of booths set up and we ended up eating lunch there. Kyle had a meatloaf sandwich and I had chicken flautas. Delicious!

Then we headed to the wedding which was beautiful! And Kyle did a great job :) People came up to him all through the night telling him how good he did and how awesome it was that he got to do the ceremony for his brother, so excited for him!

We had planned on going to Austin Stone on Sunday morning, but it didn't happen. We got back to the hotel late after the wedding so we slept in, which Kyle never gets to do on a Sunday! Plus my allergies went crazy at the wedding and I could barely breathe by the time we left so I was still all blah on Sunday morning. We ended up just grabbing breakfast at the hotel and heading out.

Stopped at one of my favorite lunch places in Waco on the way home--Food for thought. It's just this little hole in the wall place that has simple but delicious sandwiches, pizzas and other things. I had a baked avocado which was just an avocado with cheese, chicken, black olives & sour cream that the put in the pizza oven for a few minutes--amazing! I'm gonna have to try it at home some time.

It was such a fun trip, and I'm so thankful for a weekend spent with my hubby enjoying good times, good food and lots of time with family :)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Craft Project

I mentioned a few posts ago that I wanted to make a new menu board for us to plan out our weekly menu. Well thanks to pinterest I found this one that I really liked and she laid out all the directions to make it. I changed a few things and it turned out awesome! I'm still in the process of writing down all of the meals on the cards and then I'm going to laminate them. Here are pictures:

I ended up just handwriting most of it and it turned out good. There are two pockets made from crayon boxes that we painted. The idea is you keep all the meal cards in the bottom pocket and then as you make them you put them in the top pocket to keep from making the same meal every week. I added some fun ones in there like "Kyle's burgers" to let Kyle pick what kind of burger creation he wants to make for us. I also made a few "Leftovers" tags since it's just the two of us we have those nights quite often. In fact, Wednesdays are permanent no cooking nights, it's too hard with youth group to try and cook or figure out when we would eat so we are both on our own that night.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


Seems like an easy word to get a grasp on, to understand, to know what it means, and yet so difficult to accept. Tonight was God showing me I'm not accepting the grace He is pouring out on me, I'm continuously picking up my burdens and chains and carrying them around with me every day, I'm relying on my own strength and it fails me every time. This isn't the first time He's shown me this, and I would love to say it will be the last but I know it won't be, I want it to be though. I want to be able to lay down my worries and fears and not pretend like they don't exist but just trust in His timing and plan. After I poured all my heart out and sat there discouraged by the fact that yet again I'm in this situation, Wholly Yours came on my Pandora station. I've always loved this song, and tonight it just drilled into my heart exactly what I needed to hear

The harder I try the more clearly can I feel the depth of our fall and the weight of it all.
And so this might be the most impossible thing Your grandness in me making me clean.

Just like I can't rely on my own strength to get through each day I can't rely on my own strength to change my heart, I have to realize that comes through His grace.

"...He has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, uncorrupted, and unfading, kept in heaven for you..." 1 Peter 1:3-4

Thursday, February 16, 2012

In case you wanted to know me better...

1. What time did you get up this morning? 9:00 am -- very rare for me, but it was my day off so I turned the alarm off and slept in!

2. How do you like your steak? Medium, my hubby has taught me well :)

3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema: Sherlock Holmes

4. What is your favorite TV show? Parenthood, How I Met Your Mother, Fringe (but I'm a season behind)

5. If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be? Seattle, love the markets and all the local businesses, plus coffee :)

6. What did you have for breakfast? Bupa's bagels

7. What is your favorite food? This is tough-- I don't know if I have a favorite food but I do love chicken salad

8. Foods you dislike? Green beans, cooked carrots

9. Favorite place to eat? Another tough question, depends on what kind of food I want-- Zoe's is awesome, a good steak place like Charleston's, Chuy's, and fried pickles from Flip's can't be beat

10. Favorite dressing? creamy jalepeno dip from Chuy's, otherwise home made Ranch

11. What kind of vehicle do you drive? Crv

12. What are your favorite clothes? black nike sweats, t-shirt, gray Gap jacket with converse. I would wear it every day if I could

13. Where would you visit if you had the chance? Europe

14. Cup 1/2 empty or 1/2 full? Most times it's half full, and when it's half empty Kyle helps me refocus

15. Where would you want to retire? Phoenix Arizona, great weather and lots going on

16. Favorite time of day? afternoon, I'm the most awake

17. Where were you born? Battle Creek, MI

18. What is your favorite sport to watch? baseball--grew up watching it with my dad

19. What is your favorite fragrance? Delicious by DKNY

20. What is your favorite face cream? I use a neutrogena one for sensitive skin that has spf 15

21. Favorite baby/kids products? not sure yet! haha

22. People watcher? oh yeah! and an expert evesdropper

23. Are you a morning or night person? used to be a night person but I think I've switched to mornings, depends if I have to work or not

24. Do you have any pets? not yet

25. Any new and exciting news you’d like to share? Kyle's going back to school next month, we are excited for that

26. What did you want to be when you were little? a teacher

27. What is your favorite memory? Tough question, I have a bad memory but we took a lot of fun trips as a family & my dad took me to a lot of fun places like Atlanta and Seattle

28. Are you a cat or dog person? Not a huge animal person but I love my parent's dog and would love to have one of our own

29. Are you married? yes have an amazing husband :)

30. Always wear your seat belt? Always always.

31. Been in a car accident? I was rear ended when I was at Baylor, nothing too bad but the guy drove off

32. Any pet peeves? When people chew with their mouth open or smack gum

33. Favorite pizza toppings? sausage black olives and green peppers

34. Favorite flower? I like them all

35. Favorite ice cream? I love the dolce de leche frozen yogurt at the place near us, it's heavenly

36. Favorite fast food restaurant? Chick fil a

37. How many times did you fail your driver’s test? zero

38. From whom did you get your last email? general email--chase, personal email--kyle

39. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card? Anthropologie, wouldn't take long haha or Target if I was wanting to get more for my money

40. Do anything spontaneous lately? Kyle planned a surprise date for me on Sunday and we stayed at the Ashton downtown

41. Like your job? love it. Get to meet new people and have new adventures every day, plus free coffee :)

42. Broccoli? yes … just not overcooked

43. What was your favorite vacation? the cruise we went on in November

44. Last person you went out to dinner with? Kyle
45. What are you listening to right now? the news is on but the sound is off so all I hear is the dishwasher going

46. What is your favorite color? green
47. How many tattoos do you have? one, and I really want another one but I need someone to draw it for me

48. Coffee drinker? Yes kind of comes with the job of barista haha

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Meal Planning

I'm not one to make new year's resolutions, never have been, but I guess Kyle and I have made one this year-- to eat at home more often. I love to cook and both of us love eating at home, we just needed a little push to cook more often. As most of you know, it takes some pretty diligent planning to cook at home every night (or almost every night--let's not get too crazy now). Plus I'm not a great grocery shopper, I don't mind grocery shopping and I usually do good sticking to a list and finding low prices but I ALWAYS manage to forget an ingredient in the recipe. Kyle is used to getting a call at 5 asking him to stop at Kroger on his way home and pick something up for me. I'm trying to get better about it! haha.

This is our current meal planning device, a calendar we got in a Christmas gift last year. It's worked well, it's a small space to write out a full meal though, and it gets full with the other things going on in our life. So my next craft project is going to be a cute and more detailed meal calendar, I found one on Pinterest that I love (of course, Pinterest has everything). I'll post pictures of my attempt at it when I start.

But for now I thought I'd post my latest favorite recipe, it's from Everyday with Rachel Ray. I really love her recipes, they are easy and delicious. This one was delicious, Kyle loved it and we both ate it for leftovers. Which is more of a shocker about me than him, Kyle would eat the same meal all week, I don't like leftovers haha.
Cheesy Corn Couscous
2 Tbsp butter
1 package of bacon cut into 1-inch pieces
1 box (6.3 oz) pearl couscous
10 oz frozen corn, thawed
4 scallions, chopped
2 cups chicken stock
salt & pepper
3 cups (about 8 oz) grated aged gouda cheese

Cook the bacon in a large skillet (it took me two rounds cause there was so much bacon) over medium-high heat until crisp, transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate. Drain pan, except for 1 tbsp. of the bacon fat

In a large pot of boiling water, cook the couscous for 5 to 6 minutes (should be just undercooked since it will cook more in a bit); drain

Add the corn and scallions to the reserved skillet over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes. Add the couscous and the chicken stock and simmer until the liquid is absorbed about 2-5 minutes; season with salt and pepper

Stir in 2 tbsp of butter, the cheese and the bacon

Now the fun part-- eat and enjoy!! :)

Here is the picture from the recipe, I didn't get a picture of ours because well we were hungry haha.