Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Icing on My Finger

Well this weekend was one of the most important weekends of my life. Fletcher asked me to marry him! It still doesn't really feel real, even as I typed that I thought how crazy it sounded! But here is how it happened...On Saturday we had a full day! And looking back its amazing how normal Fletcher acted. We woke up early and went to a farmer's market in downtown Birmingham, then we went and ate lunch at Big Blue. Then Fletcher went home, to "mow the yard" and Lace and I went to the pool. Fletcher came to pick us up and we were going to go eat sushi downtown for dinner. Lace had her heart set on going to Vulcan, so Fletcher said it was on the way to dinner so we could go then. So we get to the top of the Vulcan and Lace says something about her mom's car battery dying and then Lace made herself scarce. So Fletch and I were just standing at the top looking over downtown Birmingham and then he said "Hey Steph, look over there..."

I turned and looked at Fletcher and said "What?!" And he got down on one knee and told me that he loved me for the first time ever and said some other sweet things and then asked me to marry him. And I told him I loved him too and said yes! Then we walked around the corner and found Lace...who was heaving crying! It was sweet.

Then Fletcher asked if we could go home to show his parents before we went to eat sushi. So I of course didn't care what we did. I was just not knowing what to do with myself. I kept saying "do I need to call people? What do I do?" So I started calling family members and by the time I had called all them we were back to Fletcher's house. I walked in and there were tons of people there! Some of fletcher's friends and almost all of my friends. There were some that couldn't make it (and we missed them!) but it was so fun. My mom and Frank also made the trip!

It was a great time to spend with friends and family. Lace and Fletch were such great secret keepers! I was shocked!! And the ring is unbelievable! It couldn't be more perfect!

So there you have it. And we have set a date!
November 6th, 2010.
So if I don't lose my mind in the next four months, it will be a miracle. In the words of the rockstar Kree Woods, "full speed ahead..."

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I Heart Tuesdays

Even though adjusting to the real world is quite the thorn in my side (I'm being dramatic), there are some things about living in Birmingham that I really like...and one of those things is Tuesdays. Tuesdays are always Fletcher's day off, so every Tuesday he meets me for lunch. Usually during the week I just look for things to do during my hour lunch break, but on Tuesdays I soak up every minute of my hour lunch break. Yesterday after I got off work Fletcher came over and I made chicken pocket, sweet potato fries, and green beans. Many of you know that chicken pockets are very significant to our relationship. The night we had our "dtr" and started dating we had made chicken pockets together. And they are definitely our favorite meal to make together, and its always fun to think back to when we first started dating.

I probably shouldn't tell you whats in the chicken pocket, because it isn't very healthy.

I love making sweet potato fries in the oven, and last night we did a little experiment. As a part of his stocking this past Christmas I gave Fletcher some barbecue sauce and barbecue seasoning from my favorite barbecue place in Memphis, The Commissary. So we decided we would try to season the sweet potato fries with BBQ seasoning, and it was pretty good! I honestly think I like just salt and pepper seasoning better, but it was definitely tasty and its always fun to try something different.

And then we completed the meal with some green beans. Which of course made me miss lace. This whole meal actually made me miss the beach house. Probably because I haven't cooked anything other than a lean cuisine since I got to Birmingham. But also because it made me miss how Sarah would always walk by and ask for one bite of my chicken pocket when I made it at the BH. But the night was really enjoyable. Its fun for fletcher and I to just do normal every day things together. After dinner we went on a walk around my neighborhood, then went to target, and then watched the news. When we were long-distance there was always pressure to eat at the best places and do really fun things every time we were together. But its been so fun to just hang out each day. So if I start to get too dramatic about the real world, or my life in Birmingham without any friends...don't feel too sorry for me, because I really am enjoying being here with Fletch.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Show Must Go On...

I had intentions of my next blog post being about all of my favorite parts of my life in Birmingham. But today, I decided that post would have to wait as I blogged about my day today. All the professors in our major used to go on and on about how in the hospitality industry you had to know how to adapt when things go wrong or when you get thrown a curveball. Well I'm in week 3 now of my job, and today that stressful situation became a reality. The day was off to a stressful start because we had a ton of catering orders, and the phone was ringing off the hook with people calling to order things for Father's Day. Tonight we had a huge dinner at the botanical gardens, a dinner for 50 people, and then a dinner for like 25. So it was a very hectic day and as the afternoon went on it only got more hectic...And then at 3:30 the power went out and PANIC struck. The ovens were full of food for the events for the night and there were still alot of orders left to come and pick up in the afternoon. Not to mention it was hot as hades outside. Which meant it was hot as hades inside too within a matter of minutes. We went and put anything we could fit in the oven in the pizza place next door. And then I ran across the parking lot to the Piggly Wiggly to talk to the manager to see if we could use their oven. So just so you can get the correct mental image, me sprinting in the 100 degree Alabama heat across a parking lot in my skirt and sandals. So then I make it to the Piggly Wiggly, sweating and ask the manager (who was missing his bottom teeth) if we could use his oven. He said "Well I don't know if we have an oven..." and then stared at me blankly. They ended up having a small oven back in the deli, but we didn't use it because by that time the power had come back on. After like 45 minutes of it being out! And then in an effort not to blow the fuse box again, we left all the lights off and the air conditioning off. So there we were...5 panicked employees rushing around in the hot and dark kitchen trying to get everything out the door that we could. We were all sweating! ended up all working out, the orders were about 5-10 minutes late to their destinations, but they made it! Then to top it all off, I drove home and sat in 280 traffic for 30 minutes. I thought...this really is the icing on the cake of a long day! But on the bright side...Fletch took me to Yogurt Lab (my new favorite place) after dinner AND my roommate and I got internet and cable at our house today! Hooray for technology!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Hey Soul Sister

The whirlwind of a weekend is over, and it did not dissapoint! In a 40 hour period of time Fletcher and I went from Birmingham to Memphis, Memphis to Nashville, and Nashville to Birmingham. Those 40 hours included lots of driving, a wedding shower, a golf tournament, a wedding, and great times with friends. The first event of the weekend was Whitney's wedding shower. My mom, Lacey's mom, and Lauren's mom did a great job with the shower! From the food to the flowers everything was perfect. Whitney got a lot of great gifts and it was great to get to all spend time together. It is crazy that her wedding is so soon and next time I will see all of those people it will be for Whitney and Jordan's wedding!

As soon as the shower was over I picked Fletcher back up, said goodbye to the family, and hit the road with Lace for Nashville. We were pulling out of my driveway at 1:45 and the wedding in Nashville was at 6. We called Sarah Beth when we got in the car and found out that they were planning on leaving for the wedding at 4:45 in order to get to the church. So Lacey and I were SUPER stressed and racing to beat the time on the Garmin! It was quite the adventure and we pulled up to Kree's house literally at 4:45. We ran in, put on dresses, and headed to the church.
The wedding was absolutely beautiful! The ceremony was at a beautiful old church on West End and the reception was at a country club. Everyone from Auburn was there and it was such a great reunion!

The world's best traveler...he was such a trooper and never complained about all the time in the car and the stressful time frames!

It was so good to see Alix! So glad that she lives in Birmingham so I can see her when she comes home on the weekends.

The beach house was back in action!

Fletcher was trying to convince Lace this weekend that it wasn't too late for her to transfer to UAB for PT school so she could be in Birmingham. I'm so excited for Lacey to get to be in Nashville but I selfishly wish UAB had been more appealing!

Adam and Sarah were so sweet and I think Sarah was one of the most beautiful brides I've ever seen!

The weekend was perfect! And as you can see, a good time was had by all!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Recap and Summer Recipe

It's been a while since I've posted...and I'm afraid that might be the new norm for my blog. Because I have NO INTERNET at my new house. That's right...I'm currently sitting at panera enjoying their free WiFi.

Last week I started life in the real world and every day when I got off work I was extremely exhausted. I was thinking "Is this how I'm going to feel all the time?!" After I got off of work my very first day last week I called Fletcher and he had made plans for us that night. I thought "I can't do anything social! I'm too tired! How can Fletcher expect me to be able to carry on conversation!"I went to bed before 10 almost every night last week!

But this week I can tell a huge difference, I'm waking up before my alarm and feeling much more myself. I am enjoying my job, sometimes I feel like my head might explode with all the new things I have to remember, but we can only hope it won't. The people I work with and for are really great and I feel like that has such a strong influence on my overall enjoyment of my job. Last night I was in the mood for making something, so I looked in my pantry and I had lots of pretzels, so I decided to make strawberry pretzel squares. Such a great summer treat! First thing I did was to crush the pretzels..this part was kind of tedious.

Next, I mixed the two cups of crushed pretzels with 1/4 cup sugar and 2/3 cup melted butter, and pressed into a 9x13 pan. Then it went in the oven for 10 minutes on 350.

While that cooled I beat 12 oz. cream cheese, 1/4 cup sugar, and 2 Tbsp. milk together in a bowl. Then I spread it over the pretzel mixture and put it in the refrigerator to cool.

While that refrigerated I added the 6 oz. package of strawberry jello to boiling water and stirred for 2 minutes, until it was all dissolved. Then the jello had to go in the refrigerator to harden for almost 2 hours! After it was all jelloed up I stirred in 4 cups of strawberries and spread it on top.

Then I let that refrigerate overnight (this recipe has alot of waiting involved!). Then today, they were ready to eat!

Tomorrow I am leaving to go HOME and to Nashville. I will get home late tomorrow night so I can go to Whitney's shower on Saturday morning. Then I am leaving right after the shower to go to a friend's wedding in Nashville. I am so looking forward to this weekend! I have been kind of lonely in Birmingham and I am so excited that I have the opportunity to see my family, my high school friends, and all my college friends in one weekend. And sweet Fletch is coming along for it all. I wouldn't trade this weekend for anything! And if you want to know exactly how serious of a statement that is let me just tell you that Carrie Underwood will be in Birmingham this Saturday night and I'm missing it. Most of you who know me know that I am Carrie Underwood's #1 fan!

(I took that picture at her last concert that I went to. We were sitting on the floor and were so close! And this picture was obviously before my new improved camera.)

Happy Weekend to all of you and hope to be back at panera soon for a weekend update!