Beach Weekending

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The end of last week and the weekend was a nice shakeup from my normal routine. We had a work retreat in Pinehurst and all the girls got to enjoy the Spa at Pinehurst. I got the Champions Massage and it was amazing. I've been very fortunate to have some very nice massages in the last few years while on work trips with Brandon, but I think this one tops it all. We stayed at Pine Needles and it looked straight out of dirty dancing. I forgot how cute Pinehurst is and already have a weekend getaway with Brandon on my mind.

Friday after our retreat was over, I headed to Ocean Isle for a fun beach weekend. Mom and Dale were nice enough to let us stay at the beach house and we all had the best time. We all loved that we didn't have a car big enough to fit the six of us, but the golf cart could! 
The boys swimming the first night

Gorgeous sunset on Friday night

So thankful for these people and their friendship


Labor Day Weekending

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

We kicked off the weekend by celebrating BREW's first birthday with lots of friends. Part of the proceeds from the night went to Help One Now which has a special place in our church community's heart. It was founded by one of our members and our church supports the children in Ferrier Village.
photo via BREW

Saturday we had our home opener vs Troy. It was great to be back in the swing of things and despite the torrential downpour/thunderstorm we had in the middle of tailgate, the weather cleared up and was beautiful for kickoff.

Happy + Hale all day, every day

We left for the beach around halftime and spent the rest of the weekend there. The weather was pretty lousy at the beach, but we still had a good time visiting with family and some family friends who came to stay with us. I'm really looking forward to everything we have going on this September and this was a great start!


5 Items for Fall

Friday, September 4, 2015

Over the past year I've been trying to pair down my wardrobe to pieces that I really love and am excited to wear. I noticed that there's also been a shift towards more muted colors and pieces that I can wear to work and on the weekends. With cooler temps on the horizon, here are a few of the pieces I'm eyeing for fall.
Tie Front Dress. Perfect for work, church, or a fun night out

Madewell Slim Boyfriend Jeans. Weekend errands or casual Friday. I can't wait to pair these with my favorite booties and a white tee.

525 America Cotton Shaker Blanket Wrap. A necessity for my freezing office and my skin's aversion to wool

Kork-Ease Velma Bootie.  This is the only leather ankle boot sans heel that I've been able to find and the cruz tan color is so pretty.  

J.Crew Flannel Boyfriend Shirt. Cozy flannel for those chilly days and not quite as oversized as the Madewell versions.


Fall Goals

Thursday, September 3, 2015

I think everyone associates the arrival of September with the arrival of fall. With the return of college football and the cooler weather ahead, it's hard not to get a little excited. We have a very fun and exciting fall ahead of us and here's a quick list of what I'm hoping we accomplish.

1. mail moving announcements (just 9 months behind on this)
2. go for a hike at umstead
3. take bible 101 at church (such a wonderful class and Lisa was amazing as always).
4. patiently await the arrival of finley hunt
5. grow our missional community
6. cheer on the wolfpack at carter finley
7. celebrate the grand opening of our new church building
8. visit a pumpkin patch
9. pass out candy to trick-or-treaters 
10. visit the farmers market (numerous times)
11. have a wonderful beach weekend with friends
12. experiment with gluten free recipes
13. make and freeze different soups and stews
14. play tennis on a regular basis
15. celebrate the weddings of a couple friends
16. take Barre3 classes 4 times a week
17. enjoy our screened in porch
18. day trip to boone/blowing rock


Life Lately

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

I can't believe it's already September and it's been almost another month since I've blogged. We are definitely keeping busy but having the best time while we're at it!

As soon as Brandon OK-ed the club chairs getting recovered, we found out that they were about to breed for our litter! The puppies are due on October 23 which means we'll get to bring Finley home right before Christmas. Best present ever. Needless to say, the chairs getting recovered are once again on the back burner, but I am perfectly content to trade recovered chairs for a puppy. 

I traveled to High Point twice in August. The first time for one of my dearest friend (and former double partner)'s baby shower and then the following weekend for another friends wedding. I've been friends with these girls for 15 years and they mean so much to me (we missed you Sarah!).

Two weekends ago we through a Wine & Design party for two of the girls in our mission community who are getting married this fall. We had a great time even though we bit off a little more than we could chew with the design. 

This past weekend we hosted a cookout for our missional community. Our group has gotten so big that we have multiplied into two groups. We're so excited that this multiplication allows us to reach out to friends and continue to spread the Gospel. 

Right after Brandon lost giant jenga and they came crashing down on me. (I promise he's petting my head and checking to make sure I'm okay -- thus everyone laughing around us).

What fun things have y'all been up to lately or what do you have coming up? I'm excited for the long weekend ahead and the first wolfpack football game of the season! 


Friday Five

Friday, August 7, 2015

This was my first full week at work in two weeks and it was much easier to get back into the swing of things than I thought it would. Tonight we're going to Death & Taxes with my family for my brother's birthday. I can't believe he'll be 23 on Monday! It just doesn't seem possible. We also have a wedding of a high school friend this weekend and I can't wait to celebrate with everyone. We always have the best time together!

1.  A small group from our missional community decided to do a bible study over the summer while our MC was on break. We just completed Tim Keller's "The Gospel in Life" this past Monday and I can't sing it's praises enough. The study applies the Gospel to our daily lives, asking us to live lives worth imitating, building community, and sharing the Good Word and God's grace with our neighbors. It's was so great to really dig deeper into His word and do a study that truly reflects the mission of our church.

2.  After years (literally) of discussing getting our club chairs recovered, Brandon and I are finally making steps towards making this happen. We already have the fabric that we're going to use (that mom got for free -- fingers crossed we have enough!!) and now we're just looking for an upholsterer. Any and all recommendations in the Durham/Wake/Johnston County areas would be appreciated. We're not afraid to drive for a good deal! We used ABZ Upholstery when we had our headboard made and while they did a fantastic job, they quoted us at much higher than we want to pay to recover these. 

This is our current chair situation. My parents bought these chairs when they moved into the first house I ever lived in (in 1988). They had them recovered in 1999 and they've been this fabric ever since. Needless to say, it's time for a change. I can't imagine how dirty the fabric actually is.
Current chair situation 

Super dark, but the fabric really doesn't go with the rest of our stuff.
Ideally, I'd move the chairs so that they're beside each other and then get two more chairs for across from them.

3. This bowl. I originally found it on One Kings Lane and almost bought it from there, but I really did not want to pay the $7.95 shipping. After a little googling, I found the exact same bowl on Amazon (which means free shipping!). I think it will be a great staple serving piece for years to come. 
4. I've been feeling overly tired lately plus a few other symptoms and I think I might have a gluten intolerance. I'm experimenting with not eating gluten for a few weeks to see if that helps any. Any recipes or tips you feel like sharing would be much appreciated! My hardest meal right now is breakfast because I normally eat some kind of granola or breakfast sandwich.

5. A puppy update. Brandon and I keep getting questions on when we're getting our dog, etc. so I thought it would be nice to address it all in one place. We've been on the wait list for this specific litter since January. The momma (Presley) was supposed to go into heat in May but is a little behind. This has happened once before and the breeder isn't concerned. They/we obviously want her to do everything in her own time so that she is as healthy as possible. At this point, if she were to get pregnant in August, we'd bring home a puppy for Christmas. 

We have most definitely gotten antsy and frustrated over the past few months, but we know that in His timing, everything is perfect. We really like the breeder that we have chosen and Presley & Damien makes incredible puppies. I know there are a lot of other options out there, but we are happy with this decision. We can't wait to share the news that Presley is expecting and other updates along the way, but until then, we're practicing our patience!
Presley with her last litter in 2014 (Brandon's boss' dog, Ellie is one of these pups!)


Peach and Bacon "Salad"

Thursday, July 30, 2015

So this definitely isn't the best picture, but this dish Brandon and I threw together on Tuesday night was so good. When Brandon deemed it "good enough to make for other people," I knew we had a winner.

3-4 white peaches, sliced and halved 
6-8 strips of bacon
Feta, crumbled (we did approximately 1/3 cup)
Basil, fresh and julienned
1/2 red onion, sliced
Olive oil

1. Cook the bacon. We like to cook it in the oven at 350 for about 20 minutes. We lay it out on wax paper (parchment paper would actually be better) on a cookie sheet and it keeps it from drawing up. Our silpat would actually be really good for this too.
2. While the bacon is cooking, saute your onions with a little bit of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt. Cook until slightly translucent. Let cool.
3. Once it is cooked and cooled, crumble the bacon
4. Combine the sliced peaches, crumbled bacon, onions, feta, and basil in a bowl and toss.

*I didn't think it needed extra olive oil after sauteeing the onions, but feel free to add a little more if you think it needs it. 
*If you don't let it cool, the feta will melt and I find melted feta to be a weird consistency.


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