Friday, April 29, 2011

Much to be Thankful For.

The devastation all around us is unlike anything I have ever seen before. Our area was hit harder by the first set of storms, but the tornadoes that went through Tuscaloosa missed us. Our area we live now, and the area around our new house are like war zones. We are so thankful that both of our houses miraculously remained untouched. Our new house has some trees down, but the house itself seems to be fine. It is ironic how the very thing I listed in the last post as one of my favorite things about the house (lots of trees) is the thing that made my heart stop when I entered the neighborhood on Wednesday. Our power is out and the most recent news we have heard is to expect it to be on 7-10 days from the date of the storm (Wednesday). There are so many power lines down that I am not too hopeful for power to come back on quickly. So the blog posts will be scarce for a while, but we are safe and sound! I've posted a few pictures from my phone, to show our area. Below is a building in the same parking lot where I work (which is just a few blocks from where we live).

These next pictures are a couple streets over from where we live now.

This last picture is the street your turn on to get to our new house. When I came upon this and couldn't turn to check on our house I panicked. But we were able to go around a different way and were relieved to see the house remained untouched, though surrounded by trees on the ground.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Announcement.

We couldn't let April end without making our announcement...
WE ARE MOVING!

As of this afternoon we are officially homeowners! It has been such a whirlwind and we learned alot about relying on the Lord to open and close doors. The house needs a lot of work on the outside, but we are excited to get started on the process of making it our own. We will post more pictures once we get settled, but here are a couple for now. We plan to move in a couple of weeks and get going on our renovations!

My favorite things: all the windows, lots of trees, brick floors in the kitchen and back living area, fireplace in the master bedroom.

We can't wait to be in a more secluded neighborhood and not be next to such busy streets.

"Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of Heavenly lights." -James 1:17

Monday, April 25, 2011

The Celebration

I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Arkansas celebrating little Ev and I already miss my family! My sister had thought through all the details and the weather cooperated to make for a perfect outdoor party. I enjoyed thinking through the food, even though we laughed about how our vision for the food kept getting smaller and smaller as the time got closer.

It was alot easier to get a picture with Allison then to try to get a picture with the squirmy little bug! She is a baby on the move for sure!

I enjoyed getting to make Ev's smash cake, I'd never made one before and it was fun to see her figure out what she should do with it. She definitely wasn't sure at first. But before too long she was digging into it!

She also got excited about all of her presents!

I had to do my best to not let myself think about the fact that this little family of three is going to be in Baltimore before I know it! I enjoyed every minute I spent with them this weekend!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Bacon Cheddar Muffins

I enjoyed a wonderful 3 day weekend in Arkansas with my family, and until I get a chance to sort through my many (specifically 104) pictures, I thought I would share a recipe I tried for Fletcher's birthday breakfast last week. I got it from my favorite food blog eatliverun.com. They are basically cheese biscuits with bacon. Bacon is always a great addition if you ask me! First you cook the bacon in the skillet and cut it in to small pieces...

Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. In another bowl, whisk together eggs, milk and melted butter. Add bacon bits and cheese to milk mixture then add wet ingredients to dry.

Scoop batter into greased muffin tin and bake for 20-30 minutes at 350.

I don't think they beat out our family favorite --quiche cups--but we really liked them. Especially accompanied by little smokies!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Little Bug Turns 1

Fletch shares his birthday with a very special little person. Today sweet little Ev turns 1!! She is such a bright spot in our family and it has been so fun to watch her grow. I absolutely LOVE being an Aunt (and eagerly await my first nephew in a couple weeks!). Fletcher likes that him and Ev have a special birthday bond!

Tomorrow I am hitting the road to Arkansas to go to Ev's First Birthday Party. She has changed so much since I last saw her and I absolutely cannot wait to spend the weekend with them. Happy Birthday Ev! Your Aunt Steph and Uncle Fletch love you alot!

The Big 2-5

Happy Birthday to my sweet husband! Today he turns 25! I can't believe it, that sounds so old! I was so ready to marry him and it is crazy to me how much my love has grown for him in the last 6 months. He takes such good care of me and I am so thankful to be experiencing life's adventures with him.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY FLETCH! I love you ALOT and am so glad you were born 25 years ago!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

A little R&R

This weekend Fletch and I had a miniature (less than 24 hours) getaway to the lake. The last few weeks have consisted of more 6 day work weeks than 5 and I have found myself restarting each new week with less and less energy. After I got off work on Saturday, Fletch and I headed to the lake for a little change of scenery. The time at the lake was just what I needed to recharge my batteries. Saturday night felt like a slumber party...we made milkshakes and watched movies on TV.

This morning we woke up slow and then sat by the lake and read and soaked up some Vitamin D. Our furry friend also enjoyed the quick trip, she loves the lake!

Today was a good reminder of our need for humans as rest. In a fast paced world we forget that the Lord calls us to rest. Too often I find myself relying on my own strength to get through the day or get through the week, and once I am completely exhausted and at the end of my own strength I give my struggle over to the Lord.

"The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside still waters, he restores my soul." -Psalm 23:1-3

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

One for the Recipe Box

I have tons of recipes I've printed and tried, or printed and hope to try, but only the best recipes make it to the recipe box. It has to be delicious for me to take the time to write it on a card and stick it in my treasured box. Tonight I tried a new Chicken recipe that will be finding a home in my recipe box. It was really different from anything I ever make, and I already had almost all the ingredients!

First I mixed together olive oil, garlic powder, ginger, crushed red pepper flakes, apple juice, brown sugar, ketchup, cider vinegar, soy sauce, and water. Whew! Don't get too overwhelmed by the number of ingredients, because most of them are staples you probably already have.

Then cut chicken into bit size pieces. Heat oil in skillet, add chicken, and cook until lightly brown. Once chicken is cooked, add liquid mixture to the skillet and bring to a boil. After it boils, reduce heat and let it simmer for 20 minutes. I fixed rice and broccoli to go with it. It has a definite Asian flare, so I would suggest serving with rice!

Staple Ingredients + Very little Work Involved = A New Favorite!

Bourbon Chicken
Chicken
1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1/8 tsp. Garlic Powder
1/8 tsp. Ginger
1/2 tsp. Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
1/8 cup Apple Juice
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1 Tbsp. Ketchup
1 tsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 cup Water
1/4 cup Soy Sauce


Sunday, April 3, 2011

Patton + Natalie

This weekend we attended the wedding of Patton and Natalie. I lived with Natalie when I first moved to Birmingham, and have loved getting to know her and Patton over the last few months. The ceremony was a clear picture of their love for the Lord and their love for each other. Congrats Patton and Natalie!

I wish I had taken more pictures! But I did get a picture of the groom's cakes because they were Ashley Mac's cakes! Strawberry, chocolate, and carrot.

Friday, April 1, 2011

How is it April Already?

I cannot believe that it is April already! March absolutely flew by. March is one of my favorite months of the year, but as we begin April we have lots on the calendar to look forward to...

First off, a wedding of a sweet friend...

Two very special birthdays...

A roadtrip to Arkansas...

Hopefully a trip or two to the lake...

And stay tuned....

If things fall into place like we are hoping we will have an exciting announcement this month!