Friday, November 25, 2011

Love Is All You Knead

Well I know a month ago I announced that I had a food blog and promised to put up recipes. Well life and time got away from me and I never had time to mess around with getting it started. The biggest issues were the pages and categorizing recipes. It still doesn't work exactly how I wanted it to, but that's a work in progress. The way I wanted it to work... well costs money and more than I was willing to spend right now. 

Its official and recipes are posted. Hope you enjoy. 

Click to visit

Love Always,

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Day 12: Holidays

I crave a good holiday. The day after a holiday I can't help but get anxious for the next. I love how holidays bring people together and its another excuse to mix up the decorations. I know I probably have annoyed my husband a bit with the changing of the decorations, but he knows I love it so he puts up with me. Sweet guy, I know. The problem he sees is that with each new set of decorations I make new things, because as a newlywed I don't have much for decorating our house for the holidays. Its been a work in progress to say in the least. The day after last Christmas we went and hit the 80-90 percent off sale on Christmas decor, as we knew that the following year would be our first Christmas as a married couple. Jeff will testify that the day after Christmas I was beyond excited for the next Christmas? What Christmas-obsessed-girl-soon-to-be-newly-wed wouldn't be? 

Since I was a little girl I could wait to put up the tree, ornaments, lights, and fill the house with the music of the season. I love every part of it. My all time favorite movie is the Grinch that Stole Christmas (the one with Jim Carey) to say that I LOVE it is an understatement. I know every line and song by heart. I watch it no matter what time of year. The thing that I love most about Christmas isn't the presents or the superficial stuff its the way that it makes you feel. You spend time with family and eat delicious food and the lights at every house how could you not love Christmas. My dear sweet husband let me even put up our decorations a week early this year! Thank you honey!! I will post pictures of our amazing tree and decorations thus far.
How could you not love this green face? haha

I do love majority of holidays. Jeff has to work this thanksgiving from 6am to 6pm. I felt bad that he would miss out on Thanksgiving and seeing as it was our first I just couldn't stand to let it pass us by. So as I have said before I planned to cook it all by myself. Of course, being me, I pulled out all the stops everything from the cranberry sauce to the salad dressing is made from scratch. We have rolls, turkey, green bean casserole, stuffed mushrooms, spiced sugar carrots, spinach poppy seed and pomegranate salad, stuffing, and homemade ice cream and pies. Fortunately, my mom came to help make my 2 days of cooking run smoothly not to mention after dinner Black Friday shopping extravaganza. I love being married and having a home to fill with company and celebrate the holidays together. I don't think life could get any better. Did I mention my dad is coming for dinner? I have never spent Thanksgiving day with my dad and I'm excited for him to come eat at my house. I promise there will be lots of pictures of our eventful day!
Have a very happy turkey day!!! I know we will!

Love Always,

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Day 10 & 11: Nature/Seasons and America

Day 10: Nature and Seasons

Growing up in Utah you can't help to be appreciate of the wonders of nature and how different each of the seasons are. I can't imagine not living by our mountains and being able to drive a few short hours and being in the heat of the red rock desert. I love the hot summers to the cold winters. It gives us so much to do that other states can't experience without traveling thousands of miles. I was driving to work a couple weeks ago and it was an absolute blizzard. Now as much as I love the snow on the ground I hate having to drive in it. Frankly, scares the daylights out of me. As I was driving I was thinking of how wonderful the weather had been a couple weeks prior. We had 80 sunny degree weather and it was fantastic. Its crazy how our weather can change so quickly to such extremes. Its one of the amazing things of this planet, especially here in Utah.
My favorite time of year is fall with all the leaves changing

Jeff's heaven on Earth= Lake Powell

Utah County Mountains
I seriously seriously seriously miss skiing
 This year I won't be able to go up to the ski resorts, but I am going to make it a point that we go next year a couple of times. That is something Jeff and I have talked about through our 7 years of dating and have never done. I have never been to Moab and that is also something we plan to do (not in the middle of the summer ... fall time sounds good). There are so many backpacking trips that Jeff has lined up for us for years to come. This summer I will experience fishing and backpacking for the first time in my life. I can't wait for all the experiences this next year brings and the opportunities to spend some quality time away from our busy lives and in the outdoors.

Day 11: America the Beautiful

Since I was a little kid I have had these deep sense of American pride. The first cd I ever owned as a kid wasn't Brittney Spears or Backstreet Boys it was a Lee Greenwood. Who is that you ask? He sings I am Proud to be an American, I was probably the only kid that knew all the words to that song at such a young age. Jeff always teases me because when I try to come up with color schemes somehow it always ends up with variations of red, white, and blue. Our engagement pictures and even our wedding colors were a variation. When I was on pinterest the other day one of my friends had this pinned to their wall. 
 I think this really puts things in to perspective. We complain about how hard this economy is and how hard our lives are, but the majority of the world is far worse off. We have so easy here and yet all we can do is complain about how things can be better. I don't want to forget this message when times get tough. When having to stretch our money to the next pay check I will think back that I am richer than 75 percent of the world. That is mind boggling to think about. Not only does this make me want to appreciate what I have, but want to help those less fortunate than myself. 

We have the freedom to choose where we live, what we do, what job we have, who we marry, who we vote for, and where we want to go and do with our lives. Millions of people don't have these same opportunities and choices we have. Remember where our country came from and what others have been through for us to have our freedoms. If you don't like how something is done, then stop complaining and do something about it. If you want things to change do your part and a step towards that is get educated and vote. I will be there next year and I will make sure that I know where I stand and who I want to represent me. We can't make things change without making it start with ourselves.

Love Always,

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Day 9: Hobby Lobby

I can officially say that I am addicted to Hobby Lobby. Having the store 2 minutes from my house is a blessing and curse; Jeff would agree. When we bought our house I couldn't wait until I could start crafts to decorate and personalize each room. When I went into hobby lobby for the first time I thought I had died and gone to heaven. If you haven't had the opportunity to visit one, you are missing out. Now this blessed store has everything that a ordinary craft store like Michael's or Robert's. Yet it has cute home things for home decor crafts, huge seasonal section, and tons of other things. I love it obviously. Not to mention they are constantly having sales going on. I haven't bought a single that that wasn't at least 40% off. Crafts are expensive and they are helping me afford my habit.

As we are preparing for the Christmas season I have spent many hours in hobby lobby over the past few weeks. We bought a good portion of our decorations, including our beautiful tree there. I will share this on another post. My brain has been running wild with all sorts of craft ideas. Here are a few of the inspirations that I have found for my own home. 

I want to create something similar on our big blank living room wall. I want to add some words or monograms

I am going to do this in a deep red for our living room.

Absolutely love this!

I am going to do this in our windows downstairs

I want to make him if I can figure a place to put him

I want to do a curtain like this in our window in the kitchen

I am all about the words.

I want to do this with our letters in the hallway

Cute wreath. I would do something similar maybe with a summer theme. I like the letter

I am going to do this same thing with a similar scheme in our guest bedroom

LOVE LOVE LOVE this. Definitely going up after Christmas
Want to do this in our kitchen window

I want to do this in our bedroom or bathroom or maybe with the empty frame art in the hallway
If I don't do the other collage I will do one like this

Thinking of doing this for Christmas. very cute idea

Love Always,

Saturday, November 19, 2011

3 and 4 Months Old

 Jeff and I have been married for officially 3 months or 91 days yesterday. Personally the 91 seems like a huge number and I can't believe how much time has gone by. We couldn't be happier and I can't imagine not being married. We are really busy this semester with work and school, but I know next semester will be worse. We will make it work. We spent last night eating sushi and going to see Breaking Dawn part 1. Jeff didn't enjoy the movie, but was a good sport for taking me. It wasn't my favorite and was a little slow paced. The next one should be good though. What did everyone else think about it? I also hated her wedding dress in the movie, mainly the front of it. I've lost my Twilight fascination I guess. I can't wait for Hunger Games to come out in March and for The Immortal Instruments. If you haven't read that serious and liked the Hunger Games Series I highly recommend it. The first book is called City of Bones.

Scuba Diving
We are currently planning a 10 day vacation to Hawaii this summer and I can't wait! Jeff has never been and has been dying to go scuba diving. We are also going to California in the spring with my family and Lake Powell with his in the summer. Plus, I know there will be weekend trips to Vegas, St. George, and varies camping trips. This next year will be filled with great memories and lots of travel. 

My paradise
Pearl Harbor

Such a beautiful resort
I love camping and can't wait to take Oakley!
 .I am loving this holiday season and can't wait for Christmas. It won't be a huge Christmas this year in our home and we would rather save our money for our upcoming trips. We are going to do some small little gifts for each other and then one bigger gift for both of us. We will be able to be part of each of our family parties and dinners. I even am thinking of planning a couple's holiday party at our house. Not sure if that will happen, but that's the plan. 

Oakley is officially 4 months old and is getting bigger by the second. Today we spent the day playing and learning roll over. It amazes me how smart he is. He experienced snow for the first time last night and this morning. I was hoping he would love it and jump around in it, but instead he hated it. He doesn't like cold and wet I guess. Maybe when we get more snow he will enjoy it, only time will tell.
Love Always,

Day 8: Cookbooks & Cooking Blogs

I love this book. Its so fun!
As far as wedding gifts go some of my favorite things we got were all the different cookbooks. Jeff and I love to cook and experience new food. We always alter recipes to make them better. I also love to bake and recently decided that I wanted to get into decorating cupcakes, cookies, and big cakes. Since we've been married we have tried so many different recipes and most were amazing... some need some work. As I have said I have a food blog called Love is All You Knead... there has just been some issues with getting it started. I swear that by thanksgiving all my recipes I have typed up and are ready to post will be there. {I swear} We are so grateful for all cooking stuff we received as gifts. Out of everything it gets the most use. Jeff's mom even made me a cookbook with all of they're families main recipes and she typed each recipe on a card with a little picture. I really appreciated the time that took, not to mention I can now make my husband's favorite recipes.

I was so excited to get this cupcake decorating book at my family bridal shower. I want to be the lady that has the fun and crazy cute desserts. I want to make awesome cupcakes for my kids parties and for holidays. Crazy, I know. I have always wanted to work at a bakery or for a cake decorator. I think it would be so much fun. I am going to save up to take some cake decorating classes to learn the tricks of the trade... they are just expensive so it'll be a long while until that happens.  A girl can dream right? 

I love getting ideas from other food blogs and seeing what creative things people do. This week I am looking for inspiration for Thanksgiving meal. This is the first year I am cooking every aspect of Thanksgiving by MYSELF!!!!!! Yikes... Jeff has to work this year until 6:30pm and he loves this holiday. I felt bad that he wouldn't get to be part of all the family festivities so I decided that instead I would invite both of my parents to dinner and have it at our house. I love to have people over to our house, but this is a big undertaking. Not to mention Jeff's parents are fantastic cooks so I'm worried that my version of Thanksgiving is going to disappoint him. We'll see how it goes, right? 

Since I am doing it all this year I want to put my own Katie twist to it. I want it to be fun and have some creativeness to it. Of course I would take on sometime even extra on such a huge project, but that is definitely how I approach everything. Go big! I haven't decided all the details yet, but I will have a post about the results. Wish me luck!

Love Always,

Friday, November 18, 2011

Epic Fail.... Days 5-7... Friends, College, and Oakley

Didn't take me long to fail at my being thankful posts. Oh well life intervenes...maybe I should be thankful for a busy life. {Maybe not}

Day 5: Friends

As I said a couple of posts ago we have the best friends a person could ask for. They are always there for me and I truly consider them to be part of my family. Its great to have friends surrounding you and from different aspects of our lives. I have friends at work that make being at work survivable. They bring goodies and remember things about your life. They are just generally a good support at work. I love that if I need to switch shifts or help with something that I can rely on them. Most of all they keep work interesting and fun. Jeff always has fun stories about work and jokes he has going on there. It gives me comfort that he enjoys his work and has fun during his long 12+ hour shifts. {How he does it I don't know.}

During our high school lunch break.
My best friend Danielle and her family have been part of my life for about 10 years now. I seriously miss all the nights and days I spent in their house. Danielle and I met in junior high and had 2 classes together. We would spend our time talking about boys as most preteen girls do. We supported each other through hard times and major life changes. We spend long nights talking {again about boys} first kisses, life goals, and all sorts of things. I love that if I'm having a hard time I can call her and we can meet for some girl talk. Her family has been a great support to me and are a big part of the reason I decided to get baptized when I was 16 (almost 17). They are a great example to me and are such wonderful people! I love you all!!!

Foster Fam (sub in Dani)
We also love Dani's boy toy Stephen. We met him about 2 years ago and it feels like we have known him forever. He is a great guy and most importantly treats my best friend like a princess. They are so much fun to hang out with and we have had some fun and crazy times. I know that we will continue to be friends even when our kids are teenagers. I can't wait to compare our how are kids are to how we were at their age. Crazy thought. First they'd have to get married...cough cough...I know they will soon enough. The sad part is that we don't get to see them very often about a couple times a month. Life gets crazy busy for all of us, but we think of you often. 

Day 6: School/College

As much as we hate homework and hate having to go to class... I am thankful for the opportunity. I know that the nights we spend studying, writing papers, and doing various class assignments will be worth it. The few years of effort now will make a huge difference to our lives and children's lives for decades there after. College has given us some great experiences and have expanded our ways of thinking. I have learned about passions and interests that were unknown to me before. {Maybe that is why they make us take so many random classes. Then again maybe they just want more money}. Before I went to college I had mapped out a plan to get out of college as fast as I could. After all, who wants to spend a lot of time in school. Through my experiences I have put to rest those motives. I decided I want to get the most out of college and if that adds a couple of semesters its okay. I have decided that I beyond my love of law that I am going to get my realtors+ license and mediation through some legal courses. You can never have enough trades.I think that it'll be something I can use and do while I am going to law school. {Plus I might have a year delay for Jeff to be able to move out of the state} I also want to take some classes in graphic design and webpage design. Through blogging I have found a passion for altering pages and making different websites. We will see how that goes along. I am not maxing out my credit hours either. I did a semester at 21 credit hours and that was horrible. I am still full time back to the average class load. We are ready for another semester and what it brings. I am also continuing with my ASL(American Sign Language) classes and so excited!! I want to be able to be fluent by the time I graduate. I want to teach my children starting at a very young age. I love it!

Day 7: Oakley

I love his weird sleeping positions.
We have the sweetest little dog, though he hasn't stayed very little. We really could ask for a better dog. He is so smart and filled with energy. He keeps our house busy and filled with laughter. My favorite part of the day is when I come home from work and he is wagging his tail with all his might waiting for me. He gets so excited he jumps, spins, and talks. He wants his hugs and kisses, then to go potty, and then his treat. He wants to be around us at all times and hates when he can't see us. When we go to the bathroom he lays right outside the door. 

totally and 100% exhausted. He had played with so many kids and couldn't take it any longer
He really is super smart and is as well behaved as you can expect a 4 month old puppy. He is completely potty trained and I can't remember the last time he had an accident in the house. He has perfected his tricks to an art and catches on to new ones extremely quick (especially if you have a treat in hand.) He can shake, sit, lay down, back up, high five, stay, come, jump, stand, and is working on bow. Jeff is trying to teach him "down, set, hike" meaning stop, bow, and fetch. Its really cute to watch them play with his football toy.

His favorite toy is a "durable" stuffed shark
 He is the most food oriented dog you will ever meet. He is extremely soft and is getting longer and longer hair; he is starting to look like a light golden retriever. I really wish he would stay little longer. He is getting to the point where I can't pick him up anymore. Oakley loves to wrestle with Jeff and loves to lick his ears {Jeff hates that part}.
Love Always,

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Day 4: Stable Jobs and Income

Its no secret that basically the entire world is struggling financially right now. In my line of work, its what I hear all day long. People across the country are struggling to make ends meet and to just provide basic necessities of life. People are getting laid off from their jobs and businesses are closing everywhere. More people are having to sign up for food stamps and state assistance. Even more people are having to move in with other family members. 

I am so thankful that Jeff and I both have stable jobs and income we can rely on. I was unemployed for a good portion of 2009 after the economy in the small town I was living in tanked. It really was a reality check. People who had master's degrees and had been making six figures were now applying for dishwasher jobs. It was a horrible time, but it taught me the importance of saving and how to stretch the mighty dollar. I learned so much about personal finance and the importance of budgeting and keeping a checkbook balanced. As a result of this time I have been able to apply that to our marriage and we were able to buy our house and make big plans for the future. This economy is a true lesson and a reality check to all of America. People need to save first and spend later. We still have a lot to learn and I plan on helping others through spreadsheets I have made and my new found love of couponing (more to come on that subject later). 

If anyone is struggling in this department I recommend putting away your cards {especially credit cards} and learning to use cash. I promise you that you'll realize what things cost when you see it and hold it. We are still learning and perfecting our methods and we have a long ways to go, but its fun and exciting. We are able to get things we wouldn't have been able to and pay off bills that we wouldn't have been able to yet. As strange as it seems I'm thankful for the hardships that the economy has caused. I do hope that it gets better for everyone's sake, but we all have to be willing to do our part for that to happen. It will be a long time before anything happens and it'll take one step at a time. 

Love Always,