Nursery rhymes. 

There was a little girl,
once upon a time.
Let’s talk about her nursery,
and let’s speak of it in rhyme.

This little girl,
Ava is her name,
has a nursery with a theme,
which was chosen before she came.

The theme is travel and adventure,
and the room has globes and maps.
There is also a dresser with shelves,
and a crib for taking naps.

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There’s a rocking chair for rocking,
and a play mat on the floor.
There are books and toys for playing,
so time in her room is never a bore.

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The Broncos are her team,
and there’s a banner strung up high.
Quotes on canvas on the wall,
remind the little girl to always try.

 

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Any dirty clothes,
can be placed inside the bin.
Drawings from the Carrot Top Paper Shop,
hang each from their own pin.

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Her parents hope the little girl
will be happy in this space,
that she’ll play and dream sweet dreams
with a smile upon her face.

What is your favorite part of your room? 

And now for a few details that I couldn’t force into rhyme….

The FANTASTIC literary heroine drawings were done by Jenny (link to her Etsy shop above).
The large canvas map over the crib is from Target.
The Broncos banner was made by a good friend for Kevin’s diaper party before Ava was born.
The little footstool with Ava’s name spelled out in puzzle letters was a Christmas gift from that same friend – from this Etsy shop.
The rocking chair was given to me by my mom years ago and she reupholstered the cushions to match Ava’s room.
The globe was mine when I was a kid.  It’s very outdated, which I need to be sure to tell Ava when she’s older so she doesn’t go out into the world thinking the USSR still exists.
The sound machine is partially visible on the table by the rocking chair.  We heart sound machines in our house.  This one was a gift and is awesome.  We mainly use it for white noise but it has a few other sounds and some lullaby’s, a nightlight, and even a light projector.  It’s the Munchkin Nursery Projector and Sound System.
The bird canvas is several years old and from Pier 1 Imports.
The quotes on canvas were made by Ava’s mother who is not in the least bit artsy.

To-do in 2015: the halfway point.

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2015 is over half over, which is unbelievable to me.  It seems high time that I check in on the year’s to-do list that Kevin and I created for ourselves.  We still have plenty to do this year, but we’re making great progress on all fronts and have crossed off two of the biggest (and most expensive) items!

1. K & A:  Go to Europe.
Done!!  You can read about here.  And here and here.  And here.  Oh yeah.  And here and here

2. K: Read a classic.
He has a few in mind as options.  He’s in the middle of David McCullough’s Truman right now which is 900+ pages and quite the commitment.  But the classics are on his radar. 

3. A: Do all Christmas shopping in local/independent stores or give homemade stuff.  Like crocheted scarves, vanilla extract (inspired by Tiffany, who gave me homemade vanilla extract for Christmas 2014!), or hot pepper oil (inspired by Allie, who blogged about it here).
I haven’t made too much progress on this, but there are still plenty of shopping days to Christmas.  The problem is that there seem to be fewer crafting days to Christmas….  My goal for July is to start some mint extract a-brewin’ with the mint we’ve been growing in our garden! 

4. A: Read 52 books.  (Bonus points if I manage to complete this 2015 reading challenge, which I think is only – ha! – 50 books….thanks, Tiffany, for sharing the idea!)
I’m on track to finish this one!  I think I’m on book 40 right now (Pride and Prejudice – for the category “a classic love story”).  My most recent check in post is here, if you’re interested. 

5. A:  Blog 104 posts.
I’ve only poster 41 times this year and the summer fever blog hiatus is not helping.  I guess I need to step it up!   

6. K & A:  Fund IRA’s for the year.
In progress & done.  Kevin takes the automatically-send-money-to-the-IRA-with-each-paycheck approach and I write a lump sum check.  So he’s over half funded for the year and I made the contribution in April.

7. K & A:  Complete at least one home improvement project. (New tile downstairs, master bathroom, shelves in the garage…)
Boy howdy, have we ever!  We started the year with a new furnace (out of necessity), then we did our tile replacement in June.  Eight new windows are being installed this week, and we’re ripping out the wet bar and replacing it with built-in bookshelves and storage this week or next.  We also have some shelves for the garage and they WILL be installed this year so that we can get that mess organized. 

8. K & A:  Run a 5k.
I was a lazy bum and didn’t run a 5K (or even work on training for one) at the beginning of the pregnancy or pre-pregnancy and I won’t even pretend that it’ll happen this year after the baby is born.  So Kevin has selflessly volunteered to run two 5K’s this year and we’ll call it good.  He’s planning on one in September and maybe one in August. 

9. K: Smoke a rack of ribs or a brisket.
My mom gave Kevin a brisket (we get all our beef from my parents, who have cattle), and he’s excited to use the smoker attachment on the grill.  This seems like a good fall activity. 

10. K & A:  Take a road trip to a historic destination in New Mexico.
We have a few ideas on where to travel.  Some are day trip and some are overnight.  We’ll probably do the former, but that still leaves us with plenty of options.  There are so many cool historic destinations in this state!

11. K & A:  Try 10 new restaurants.
We have tried 4 new restaurants together.  Each of us have tried new restaurants separately this year as well, but we’re only counting the ones we go to together. 

12. K & A:  Try 15 new recipes.
We’ve tried 9 new recipes.  It’s hard to be motivated to cook in the summer!  I think we’ll finish this goal off in the fall/winter. 

13. K:  Start and complete an entire workout program.
He’s researching 5K training programs now, so that could count, but he has also been working his way through a strength training program. 

14. K:  Take a golf continuing ed class or attend three golf lessons.
Kevin has checked the schedule for CE golf classes, and that could be an option in the fall.  Otherwise, he’ll easily be able to attend three golf lessons at a club in town. 

15. A:  Host a theme party.
Leann and I are in the very early stages of planning a cocktail/mocktail (can you guess which part of that duo I’m in charge of?) party withthe “Favorite Things” theme. 

Did you set some goals for 2015?  If so, are you making good progress? 

An anniversary and other recent happenings.

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I’ve been a Mrs. for two years as of May 24, 2015!  Getting to spend my everyday with Kevin is truly the biggest and bestest of blessings.  We celebrated the anniversary by not cooking – choosing to have a big breakfast at Central Grill and our traditional anniversary dinner out at Indigo Crow.  Where we each had the lobster ravioli, supplemented by a Caesar salad (him), green chile corn chowder (me), wine (him), and Earl Grey tea (me).  It was all delicious.  Especially this…

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We also made our weekly trip to the grocery store on the second annual celebratory day of our wedded bliss, because we are romantic AND practical.

The day was made perfect by texts and calls and cards and lots of love from our family and friends, and by all the quality time we spent with our cat-kids.

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^ Our pet Meercat. ^

Other recent events include:

A Pinterest party hosted by Heather.  It was so much fun to get together with some of my favorite girls and make jewelry.  This was our pinspiration.

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Kevin and I also recently cleaned and reorganized the master bedroom closet and we took up gardening.  It was so nice to work in the backyard (perfect weather!) and get our closet arranged to be a bit more functional.

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We’re growing basil, garlic, chives, rosemary, and we have a planter that needs to be filled.  Tomatoes for sure.  Maybe spinach and a few herbs (thyme?  dill?).  What do you recommend for first time vegetable growers who don’t have the greenest of thumbs? 

One last item – a beloved family pet was recently taken to dog heaven, leaving a doodle sized gap in life.  If you’re so inclined, take a stroll down memory lane with this post by Bailey (I typed it for him, as these pesky keyboards just weren’t made for paws), and keep my sweet in-laws in your thoughts.

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Telling him.

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I took a pregnancy test when I was home for lunch one day and it was positive.  Immediately I felt like my body and mind were moving in slow motion or zero gravity.  Then I started thinking about how to tell Kevin.  Eventually the idea hit me and I knew that I had to tell Kevin about the baby in the same way that he had introduced the idea of a proposal to me.  When Kevin proposed (engagement story here), he made me the sweetest book that compiled memories from our first few years together with an invite to start the next chapter in our story. Thanks to Shutterfly I had a book completed and ordered within 30 minutes.  The only problem?  My shipment was expected to arrive in SIX DAYS.

At first I was optimistic.  Waiting six days to tell him will be a breeze, says I.  That’s not even a week.

I made it until about 8:00 AM the following morning.  Then I just couldn’t wait any longer and really, was it fair to wait?  After all, it’s his baby too!  Was I bad mother and wife by keeping this secret??  As I walked upstairs after breakfast Rue shot by me like a rocket and then threw herself on the floor at my feet, causing me to do a little hop skip and a jump to avoid stepping on her.  (She does that all the time.)  I decided that was a great opening and pulled the Ziploc bag with the pregnancy test out of a drawer.  Kevin was washing his face or brushing his teeth or something (details, details).  I told Rue, “You’re going to have to stop that, kitten.  My belly’s going to be growing and I won’t be able to see you,” as I set the bag/test down on the counter near the sink.  Kevin looked at it, registered what it was, and his face just lit up.

“Look at you – being all cool,” he said.

Like my knees weren’t shaking and my eyes weren’t welling up with tears.  Yeah, that’s me.  Cool.

And five days later, he got his book.

When you had big news to share, how did you tell the most important person?

Makin’ truffles.

Ashley scored a great deal on Groupon (typical story, right?) – learn how to make truffles at La Joliesse Chocolates.  She invited Heather and me to tag along and it was a sweet adventure.  Choc-olate it up to a good time!  Sorry – I just cocoan’t resist.

One of the owners of the shop taught the class and his passion for chocolate was clear.  It’s so fun to learn from someone who is passionate about their work, right?  He gave us a history of chocolate and we did a tasting.  Within the first 30 minutes of class I was well on my way to becoming a chocolate snob and never buying Hershey’s again.

Then we hit the kitchen.  Each participant got to spend some time tempering chocolate (bringing it to right temperature so the best sugar crystals can form) and then we each made a butter ganache.

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The most fun part followed…our instructor turned us loose on a table full of flavorings.  Herbs, sea salt, cream of tartar, different liqueurs, balsamic vinegar (shockingly good with chocolate!), and lots more.  We could try a little sample with our ganache and once a winning combination was discovered, we mixed it into the full bowl.  I went pretty plain-Jane with sea salt and cream of tartar (it added a citrus punch to the chocolate).  Ashley and Heather were more creative. The ganache went into the freezer to cool for a few minutes and then we rolled spoonfuls into little truffles.  The truffles could be coated with powdered sugar, cocoa, crushed almonds, red pepper flakes…whatever we wanted.

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It was messy but so fun!  We each left with around 20 homemade truffles.

And a bit of a sugar high.

Have you ever made truffles?  What is your favorite kind of chocolate?

Hodgepodge.

Recently, Kevin and I saw Chicago the musical on the stage and then we dined at Yanni’s, a favorite spot.  This night out was a birthday gift from him to me and yet again, he outdid himself by giving the gift of an experience.  Things are fun, but experiences are even better, don’t you think?  Experiences bring people and cultures together.  They’re the first step in the development of “Remember when…” anecdotes, which are timeless.    Chicago was wonderful – top five, probably top three.

On that subject, because I know you’re curious, theatre favorites are as follows:
1. Wicked (I’ve seen it three times, so…yeah, hands down my number one.)
2. Movin’ Out
3. Chicago
4. The Lion King
5. Aida
6. Les Miserables
7. Rent
8. Cats

If I could choose any prestigious award to win for my talent and dedication to a craft, I would choose to be an actress on the stage and win a Tony.  Of course, I can’t sing well.  A complete lack of rhythm does not a dancer make.  And I’m horribly sensitive so I’d dissolve after one bad review.  Friends, I’m not meant to bring home a Tony.  But I can watch and love.

I am the proud owner of a new bike!  My wonderful in-laws gave me one for my birthday and boy, is she a beaut.

IMG_9338 Her name is Fantasia and I think we’re going to get along swimmingly well.  As long as I learn how to get my feet out of the cages and an introduction to the pavement, that is.  I haven’t ridden for any significant distance since Whitney, Tiffany, and I rode across the Golden Gate Bridge in 2008.  But…it’s like riding a bike, right?

Kevin granted my Christmas wish and gifted me with a Fitbit in December.  I eased into walking my 10,000 steps a day, but I’m on a roll now.  Gym days help me reach the goal a little faster than on non-gym days {which is, ahem, most days} and I’ve been burning up the pavement with regular treks between my house and the office and Sue/Craig’s house and the office and my house and Sue/Craig’s house.  Still 10,000 steps is a LOT and it is not uncommon for Kevin to find me pacing our house, tallying up steps.

Van Gogh was channeled and Moscato was sipped during a trip to Design by Wine with a few of my favorite local ladies.  No one will accuse me of stealing the original when they see my version of Starry Night hiding in the closet at home.  But there’s nothing like a little humble pie painting fun to remind one to not take oneself too seriously.

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February is coming.  Go to my final Shop Your Closet – No Pants December post HERE and tell me what kind of challenge I should do in the upcoming month.  January quickly and quietly evolved into a quintessential month of jeans, hoodies, and sneakers.

What prestigious award would you be most honored to win?  Do you use a Fitbit? 

30 by 30 – Fourth {and final!} quarter update.

Today, I’m 30.  I am delighted that I managed to cross every item off the 30 by 30 list. As I look over the list, I’m reminded of how amazing the people in my life truly are.  How blessed I am.

Creating and following this list was so fun and I recommend that everyone do one before a birthday – any birthday – at some point in life.

{Original List}   {1st Quarter Update}   {2nd Quarter Update}   {3rd Quarter Update}

Here’s the final graph of quantity items, followed by detail for each individual item.

30 by 30 4th Quarter Progress Graph

1. Find a flattering (key word) red lipstick.

With the help of an expert lipstick consultant, Leann, I discovered Brave Red at MAC.  The name is quite fitting, and I love the color!

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Red lip and fleece. A winning combination.

2. Sit at a floor table for dinner at Pars (a Greek restaurant). 

Kevin and I met up with two of our good friends at Pars for dinner in January. Not only did we sit at a floor table, but it was also a belly dancer night.  Kevin and I find the belly dancer nights to be a bit awkward, so we try to avoid them.  But it seemed appropriate that we had the full experience at the floor table.  I love Pars, but I’ll stick to regular tables.  I’m not an especially tall person and my legs were aching by the end of dinner, crammed under that low table!

Pars with K & N - January 2014.

Pars with K & N – January 2014.

 3. Buy a designer purse for myself.

I bought one.  And I love it.  But I’m also struggling with a case of buyer’s remorse.  It is just so expensive.  Thus far, its life with Amy has been spent in the closet, tags and wrappings still intact.  I reserve the right to return and find something, umm, less pricey.  Like a wallet.

Update:  I returned the purse that I’d originally purchased (see the 2nd Quarter update post for a picture), and found another one that I love so much more.  It was still a lot to spend on a purse and I don’t foresee myself regularly purchasing designer purses, but I do really like it.

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4. Fund IRA for year.

5. Plan and execute a surprise date.

Read about it here.  It involved choose-your-own-adventure kind of fun and included sushi, bookstore, and game night at home.

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6. 52 hours of volunteer work. 52/52

4 hours – El Ranchitos de Los Ninos
5 hours – Chocolate Fantasy gala
3 hours – Charity Cruise gala clean up
3 hours – JL rummage sale to benefit Henderson House
5 hours – JL new member advisor
1 hour – official HUG card writer for JL
4 hours – The Storehouse
3 hours – The Curiosity Collaboration
4 hours – Rio Grande Food Project
3 hours – Mystery Masquerade Red Carpet fundraiser for JLA
1 hour – Coordinating T-day pie donations for Barrett House
6 hours – Festival of Trees benefitting Carrie Tingley Hospital Foundation
1 hour – Stocking stuffing for St. Michael’s
1 hour – Foundation board meeting/planning
2 hours – DIAD planning
6 hours – Miscellaneous JL activity

7. Read 48 books. 53/48

1) Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – 4 stars
2) Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix – 4 stars
3) Anne of Windy Poplars – 4 stars
4) The Fault In Our Stars – 4 stars
5) Devil In The White City – 4 stars
6) Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince – 5 stars
7) The Silver Star – 3 stars
8) Princess Academy – 4 stars
9) Divergent – 4 stars
10) Roots of Empathy:  Changing the World Child by Child – 4 stars
11) Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister – 3 stars
12) The Husband’s Secret – 4 stars
13) Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – 4 stars
14) Breakfast at Tiffany’s – 4 stars
15) Me Before You – 4 stars
16) The Paris Wife – 3 stars
17) The Other Typist – 3 stars
18) The Last Summer (of You & Me) – 3 stars
19) Her Fearful Symmetry – 3 stars
20) Heart and Soul – 3 stars
21) I’ll Walk Alone – 2 stars
22) My Name is Memory – 3 stars
23) Dollface – 4 stars
24) The Giver – 5 stars
25) MWF Seeking BFF – 4 stars
26) Sisters of Treason – 4 stars
27) I’ve Got Your Number – 5 stars
28) Girls In White Dresses – 3 stars
29) The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets – 4 stars
30) Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour – 5 stars
31) Lessons From Madam Chic – 4 stars
32) The Happiness Advantage – 4 stars
33) Paris in Love – 3 stars
34) Night Diver – 2 stars
35) Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?  (And Other Concerns) – 3 stars
36) Life After Life – 4 stars
37) The Hobbit – 3 stars
38) The Girl You Left Behind – 3 stars
39) Gathering Blue – 4 stars
40) The Paris Architect – 4 stars
41) Remember Me? – 3 stars
42) Tara Road – 4 stars
43) The Goldfinch – 3 stars
44) Insurgent – 3 stars
45) The Power of Habit – 4 stars
46) The Language of Flowers – 5 stars
47) Ain’t She Sweet? – 3 stars
48) The Last Letter From Your Lover – 4 stars
49) Beautiful Ruins – 3 stars
50) Messenger – 4 stars
51) The Secret History – 3 stars
52) What Alice Forgot – 4 stars
53) Orphan Train – 5 stars

8. Take Kevin to an OK State football game.

He loved it – I wrote about it here.

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9. Send 24 just-because letters or gifts to friends. 24/24

10. Go on a blate – with a blog friend that I have not yet met in person.

Click here for a post about my blate (blogger + date) with the lovely Jenny over at Jeneric Generation.

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11. Complete the Photo-A-Day challenge following Fat Mum Slim’s prompts. 365/365

You’ve seen the Instagram posts.  You know.  Oh, you know.

12. Run a 5K.

Tiffany decided to do a little informal 5K on the morning of her wedding.  There were six or seven of us and we went at our own pace through the countryside.  It was beautiful and peaceful and I managed to jog the entire 5K without stopping so I’m counting that baby as my official 30-by-30 5K.  And I didn’t even have to pay an entry fee.

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Photo courtesy of the official race photographer, Annie B. I’m the one in the purple.

13. Host a murder mystery dinner party.

I hosted a murder mystery party in June and it was so much fun!  Read more here.

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14. Visit the Grand Canyon.

I have the best in-laws in the world.  They surprised me with an early birthday trip to the grandest of canyons on the weekend after Thanksgiving.  I wrote about it here.

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15. Weekend trip with my mom and sister.

Schedules being what they are, we didn’t manage to get away for a full weekend of fun at the Grand Canyon or Vegas (two ideas we’d tossed around).  But we did enjoy an excursion to some local petroglyphs.  The adventure is recapped in full here.

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16. Attend three theatre events or concerts. 4/3

1) Jim Gaffigan – 3/13/2014

Pre- Jim G. smiles on 3/13/2014.

Pre- Jim G. smiles on 3/13/2014.

 2) Avril Lavigne and Backstreet Boys – 6/2/2014

Pre-gaming on the lawn before BSB and Avril hit the stage!

Pre-gaming on the lawn before BSB and Avril hit the stage!

 3) Impulse dance show – 8/8/2014

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4) Wicked:  The Musical – 9/18/2014

image17. Attend one of Meta’s weekend yoga retreats OR attend one yoga class a day for seven consecutive days {just in case the weekend retreat options don’t work out}.

The weekend yoga retreat didn’t work out, but the seven days of yoga did!  Read about it here.

Day 1 – 7:30 AM – hot yoga with Meta at a local studio
Day 2 – 5:30 PM – yoga at my gym
Day 3 – 7:30 AM – hot yoga at a local studio
Day 4 – 10:00 AM – Meditation class and practice at the city museum with Leann and Katie
Day 5 – 11:15 AM – hot yoga at a local studio
Day 6 – 5:30 PM – yoga at my gym
Day 7 – 9:30 PM – cosmic hot yoga with Meta at a local studio

18. Take a train ride.

I made the trip to Santa Fe on the Railrunner for a work event.  Like Sheldon, I do love trains.

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19. Spend a morning shooting guns (including the one I inherited from my dad) with my friend Tom C.

I procrastinated the planning of this until the last week of December, so it was January 2 when Kevin and I drove south to do some target shooting.  As luck (or something) would have it, it was snowy and cold that day.  We still had a great time with Tom and Shawna and Keith, and we plan to go back out when it’s a bit warmer!  Here I am, with Tom and my dad’s 30-30 (I know nothing about guns and learned that it was, in fact, a 30-30 on the day we went shooting – how perfect that it is a 30-30 for my 30 by 30.).

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20. Take a dance class.

I went to Nia with Sue on 11/22/2014.  I’d definitely go back!  Nia is a great way to free your mind of inhibitions and just be active and have a good time.

21. Go see Vanilla Pop play.

Vanilla Pop with the ladies on 6/6/2014.

Vanilla Pop with the ladies on 6/6/2014.

 22. Cook 15 new recipes. 27/15

1) Melt-in-your-mouth baked chicken – recipe
2) Spaghetti squash in the crockpot – recipe (if it can even be called that)
3) Swiss chard with honey roasted garlic – recipe
4) Slow-cooker beef brisket – no real ‘recipe’ but I’d never made this before, so I’m countin’ it – just cooked a beef brisket (seasoned with McCormick steak seasoning), a can of cream of mushroom soup, a chopped onion, sliced mushrooms, and four cups of beef broth in the slow cooker on the low setting for 7 hours
5) Dairy free pesto – recipe (the first time I made this, it was a complete FAIL because I over-toasted {read:  burned} the pine nuts and the pesto tasted burnt and gross)
6) S’mores treats – recipe
7) Mediterranean Orzo salad – no official recipe to share (cooked whole wheat orzo, kalamata olives, grape tomatoes, spinach, olive oil and lemon dressing seasoned with salt and pepper, and feta cheese)
8) Jalapeno cheese dip – recipe (slight variation from recipe:  I used a different brand of jalapeno dip seasoning.  It was still a hit with the family at Easter.)
9) Slow cooker brown sugar glazed pulled chicken – recipe (I didn’t have soy sauce so I used a Hickory and Brown Sugar BBQ sauce instead.  It was still tasty.)
10) Asparagus and ham sandwiches – recipe
11) Greek chicken – recipe (we did bake rather than grill, unlike the recipe)
12) Slow Cooker Ground Beef Lasagna Soup – recipe
13) Mediterranean Quinoa Salad – recipe
14) Lemon & Garlic Chicken – recipe
15) Steak Parmesan – recipe (made a few adjustments but followed the general recipe)
16) One Pot Zucchini Mushroom Pasta – recipe
17) Kale Chicken – recipe
18) Beef Stew – recipe
19) Sausage & Butternut Riggies – recipe
20) Salmon and Dill Chowder – recipe
21) Slutty Brownies – recipe
22) Crock Pot Cheddar Creamed Corn – recipe
23) Pasta with Chicken and Brussels Sprouts – recipe
24) Gingerbread cookies – recipe
25) Stuffed Bell Peppers with Brown Rice and Sausage – recipe
26) Chocolate Saltine Toffee – recipe
27) Corn Chowder – recipe

23. Go on twelve date nights. 12+/12
(This one has proven difficult to track because Kevin and I go out to dinner at least once a week and every dinner out feels like a date!  But for the purposes of this 30-by-30 list item, I counted assorted nights that felt especially special.  Let’s just say that we far exceeded 12 dates!)

24. Enroll in a continuing education class.

Attended a HIPAA class on 2/18/2014.

25. Send twelve More Love Letters notes. 12/12

26. Take tea in a tearoom – topped off (haha!) with a fancy hat, naturally. 2/1

Tea with new work friends at Figments on 3/22/2014.

Tea with new work friends at Figments on 3/22/2014.

Tea with Joy at the Phoenician - 4/25/2014.

Tea with Joy at the Phoenician – 4/25/2014.

27. Journal 52 times. 52/52

I learned that I’m just not too into journaling….  On January 3, I wrote six journal entries.  Trust me…I was scraping the bottom of the insight barrel by the end of it.

28. Assemble a framed travel map.

Kevin bought me the most beautiful world map when he traveled to the Pacific Gulf Islands over the summer.  We had it framed and stuck some pins in it.  Learn more here.

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29. Attend a festival. (Jazz Fest, Lavender Fest, etc. – whatever I happen to stumble into.  The sky’s the limit when it comes to fest-ing.)

I went to the local lavender & garlic festival one weekend in July.  Two of my favorite things under a blue clear sky on a summer day?  Don’t mind if I do.

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Lavender & Garlic Fest – 7/12/2014

30. Explore a city I’ve never visited before.

Seaside in San Diego - June 2014.

Seaside in San Diego – June 2014.