Saturday, December 13, 2008

I'll be home for Christmas...

Finals are done and I'm packing my bags! Early tomorrow morning I will be flying home to Louisiana to spend 2 1/2 glorious weeks with my family. Hubby and I had our Christmas last night, so I feel totally in the Christmas spirit now. He did such a good job picking out presents (and taking all of my hints!). My internet access at home will be limited to my IPhone, so this will probably be my last post until the New Year. My mom and I will be cooking up all kinds of delicious recipes, so I should have some fabulous food posts when I get back. My mom's Southern/Cajun cooking is AMAZING...I fully expect to gain another 10 pounds over the holidays! I hope you all have a wonderful and blessed Christmas. I can't wait to read everyone's holiday posts when I get back. I will leave you with some pictures I took at home last Christmas.

Merry Christmas!! I hope Santa is very good to all of you :)


Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Yesterday MIGHT have really been Christmas...

This Christmas, I'm not really living with my hubby anymore. Instead, hubby has been replaced by a 5-year-old who begs every day to open his Christmas presents. Of note, we will already be celebrating our Christmas almost 2 weeks early because I'm going home for Christmas on Sunday (sadly, he will be staying here to work). I've tried to tell him that he's lucky because all the other boys and girls have to wait until the 25th, and he gets to open his on the 13th. I'm the type of person who likes to wait until Christmas to open everything, so I cannot fathom opening presents this early. In order to appease him, I allowed him to open one gift on Saturday. He promised he would not beg to open presents early any more if I allowed him that one gift.

Flash forward one day later to Sunday: "You know, we don't really know for sure that the 25th was really Jesus' birthday. His birthday could actually be today, so we should probably go ahead and open presents. Today might REALLY be Christmas."

So I have been scolding him and telling him no presents until the 13th. However, last night he found my kryptonite..."If you let me open a present tonight, tomorrow we can go to Nine West and you can get those 2 pair of shoes you were wanting." Two seconds later, I'm shoving a gift into his hands. So I guess we both won that battle. He got to open a present on December 8 and I'm getting 2 new pairs of shoes.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Where did the weekend go??

Why does it feel like Friday night was just a few seconds ago? Lately my weekends seem to just fly by at lightning speed. I spent the majority of the weekend doing school work, but we did find time to take a quick picture for our Christmas cards.

This picture makes me realize how tired I look and how badly I need a hair cut. By this point in the semester I basically start to look (and feel) like a walking corpse. But only one more week of craziness and then I can sleep...and make a hair appointment...and read a book that isn't related to school!!

I was also playing around with the camera and took this picture of Heaven:

I'm not the best photographer so I was very excited to have captured this "artsy" shot of her :)

And finally, I thought I would leave you with this image that I cannot get out of my mind:

I NEED this ring. I am trying to fight the urge to buy it because I know it's Christmas, and I should be buying for others and not myself...but just look at it! Sigh.

Santa, if you are reading this, could you please add this to my Christmas list?


I have been tagged by the fabulous Jeanie of Serious Shopaholic! She has an amazing blog so you should definitely check it out! Here are the rules:

1. Link to the person that tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Share six non-important things/habits/quirks about yourself.
4. Tag six random people at the end of your post by linking to their blogs.
5. Let each person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their website.
6. Let your tagger know when your entry is up.

So here goes...

1. When I decide I want something (clothes, shoes, jewelry, etc.), I totally obsess over it until I get it. Sometimes this may mean driving to every mall in the area, online shopping at 2 AM, or neglecting other activities I should be doing (i.e. studying). I seriously cannot think of anything else until I get whatever I'm obsessing over.

2. I secretly indulge in ridiculous reality shows like The Hills, The Real Housewives of Orange County, and Rock of Love. I feel like I have to use my brain so much that sometimes it's just nice to do an activity that doesn't require any thinking at all.

3. I'm anal about the way I pack my lunch. Everything must be in a separate bag and assembled right before I eat. It grosses me out when a sandwich is all soggy because it was assembled hours ago.

4. Although I've wanted to be a doctor most of my life, I got burnt out after the first year of my master's program and decided to totally switch career I worked for a while as a make-up artist and stylist. The time off made me realize that I really did want to go to doctor school.

5. I am crazy about making lists. I love the satisfaction of checking something off my lists. My To Do lists are outrageous because I list the most mundane tasks just so I feel like I've accomplished something by checking them off.

6. Because my specialization is forensics, I am constantly reading books or watching shows about serial killers and the criminal mind. But I never have nightmares about it. Instead, my nightmares involve shopping scenarios. I might be in a store where everything is on sale but I can't find my size. Or I might have an armful of fabulous clothes and not be able to check out. It's weird, I know.

I think most of the ladies of the blogs I follow have already been tagged. If someone hasn't that would like to be, let me know and I will be happy to tag you :)

Saturday, December 6, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like finals week...

This time next week I will be basking in the glory that comes with completing yet another semester of school. But I am totally dreading getting through this weekend and next much to do and so little time to do it. In the midst of all the finals hoopla, I hope to squeeze in some fun things too. Thursday night we attended my university's annual winter party at a cozy restaurant right on the bay. Because the party is strictly for students and faculty in my doctorate program, one of the highlights of the night is the psychology themed gift giveaway. If you don't personally know a psychologist or psychology grad student, it is important to note that we are HUGE nerds when it comes to anything psychology related. Sadly, I have yet to win a gift giveaway, so I decided to compile my own list of psychology gifts that I need. Fortunately, hubby was there to witness my strong desire for these things, so hopefully some of them will end up under the Christmas tree.

These Freudian Slippers are the holy grail of the party giveaway. I think slipping my feet into these would be a nice treat on those mornings I have to get up at 5:00 AM to go see patients.

This Freud and his couch finger puppet sticks to the fridge when not in use.

Pavlov's dog finger puppet

Rorschach inkblot coasters

This canvas bag would be great for toting around testing supplies.

This magnet would be the perfect gift for a Rorschach junkie such as myself. I would really love to have this on a coffee mug.

I think this shirt just says it all.

I'm now going to try to force myself to finish that stats project today because I really want to spend tonight making a gingerbread house. Hopefully fun photos to come!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

I'm working REALLY hard on my motivation level...

One whole page of my stats research proposal is officially done (right now we won't focus on the fact that I still have 11 pages to go). I am proud.

Monday, December 1, 2008


I have been seriously anti-schoolwork the past few days. Dangerously so. In addition to finals, I have a huge statistics project due. Statistics is possibly the most boring subject ever, so you can imagine my desire to put this project off until the last possible moment. I also have client reports due this week, but all I want to do is curl up in bed and watch Gossip Girl. As part of my efforts to procrastinate, I made gumbo. Gumbo is a classic Louisiana dish. It's spicy and full of flavor.

In a further effort to procrastinate, I decided to make a Christmas wish list for my fur baby Heaven. If she were able to write her own letter to Santa, I'm sure it would include these things:

An elegant rhinestone collar

A credit card for Barkingdales

A pink I-Paw

A sweet little raincoat

Something from Sniffany & Co

A luxurious bed for afternoon naps

A cute little sundress

A wardrobe for the latest fashions

A jar full of treats

If only I could turn in letters to Santa instead of some boring ole stats project. Sigh. Oh well. I promise I'll start on it tomorrow.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

And I wonder why I'm gaining weight...

I find myself cooking a lot lately...and not the healthy recipes I was having so much fun whipping up this summer. Nope, lately I'm in the mood for high-calorie, oh-so-delicious, pack-on-the-pounds comfort food. Maybe it's because the holidays just call for rich satisfying foods, or maybe it's because cooking provides a nice outlet from the stresses of doctor school. Whatever the reason, one of my New Year's resolutions will be to revert back to healthier cooking. But I still have one more month to indulge, and I plan on making this holiday classic at least once more.

Sweet Potato Pie

1 large sweet potato or 2-3 small ones (need about 3 cups, mashed)
3/4 cup sugar
2 Tablespoons flour
3 eggs, beaten
3 Tablespoons butter, melted
1 small can of evaporated milk
cinnamon to taste

Peel and slice potatoes and boil in water until tender. Drain and mash.

Mix flour with sugar and add to mashed potatoes. Add eggs, melted butter, and evaporated milk. Beat with a mixer for several minutes until mixture is fluffy. Add cinnamon (I like cinnamon so I use between 1/2 to 1 teaspoon). Pour mixture into unbaked pie crust and sprinkle top with cinnamon. Bake at 350 degrees 45-50 minutes.

It's important to check on your pie while it's baking, as baking time may vary. If you notice crust getting too brown, you may need to lower oven temperature and increase baking time. As easy way to tell if it is done is to lightly shake the pie plate...if the middle wiggles, it's not done yet.

My Letter to Santa

I seriously must have spent 3 hours the other night making my Christmas list for my husband. It was totally indulgent and so satisifying. Naturally, my list contained many items that I just can't live without. Here are a few of my favorites that I'm hoping Santa doesn't forget to put in his sleigh:
Prada Infusion D'Iris--I'm not usually a fan of floral perfumes, but this scent is light and clean.

Martha Stewart Cooking School--I'm a huge Martha fan and can't wait to get my hands on this book!
Hunter wellies--I reside in a state that has an actual "rainy season", so these wellies will keep me looking stylish as I trudge through downpours and hurricanes.

Juicy Couture fleur de lis necklace--This delicate little necklace will be a sweet reminder of my heritage on days when I am homesick.
Marc Jacobs watch--I have been addicted to watches lately. I love the classic shape of this one and think it will go perfectly with my "professional doctor wardrobe".

Foley + Corinna Mid-City Tote--I love the butterly leather and roomy shape of this bag.

What's on your list for Santa this year?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Giving Thanks

When I found out I wasn't going to be able to go home for Thanksgiving, I was quite depressed. But the day turned out to be great after all. Hubby and I woke up and noshed on orange cinnamon rolls while watching the Macy's parade together. We then had a big dinner with my husband's family and filled our stomachs with deep fried turkey, dressing, green bean casserole, and cheese muffins. For dessert, I made sweet potato pie and chocolate gingerbread bars. I will be sharing the recipes for those soon.

I am still undecided as to whether I'm going to venture out into the hords of shoppers for Black Friday. I loved Black Friday when I was a child, but now I'd rather pay the extra bucks and shop in peace on a less crowded day. Hubby and I exchanged Christmas wish lists the other day, so I may just sit in front of the computer with a big mug of hot chocolate and online shop to my heart's content.

On this day I am thankful for these things (among many others):

--My family
--My wonderful husband
--My precious little dog Heaven
--My faith
--Amazing friends
--The fact that I am almost one semester closer to being done with doctor school

Heaven and I after stuffing ourselves with Thanksgiving dinner


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I love you, dumpling

Southern belles love classic comfort foods, especially chicken and dumplings. I love to make a big pot of these when the weather cools off a little. Since cool weather is a rare event in Florida, I took full advantage of the dropping temperatures this weekend and made one of my favorite recipes.

Chicken & Dumplings

Boil chicken approximately 2 hours until chicken is very tender and falling apart. I usually use about 3 frozen boneless skinless chicken breasts.

For the dumplings you need:
2 cups flour
1 egg, beaten
4 tablespoons oil
7 tablespoons cold water
1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix together ingrediants until a soft dough forms.

Roll out the dough and cut into thin strips. Let the strips sit for a while, about 30 mins to an hour.

After chicken is tender, remove from broth and pull apart. Add 1/2 stick of butter to the broth and return broth to a boil. I also like to add a couple of chicken bouillion cubes to the broth. Drop dumplings into the boiling broth. Keep broth boiling until all dumplings are submerged, then reduce heat. Add 1/2 cup of milk. Return chicken to broth, cover, and cook until dumplings are tender (about 20-30 minutes).

Add black pepper to taste.

I served my dumplings with these cheese muffins. It was a delicious supper and even better the next day.


Getting in the Swing of Things

I decided to start this blog as a result of my love for reading the blogs of others. I want this to be a place to share adventures, inspiration, recipes, and things that bring me joy. Learning to do this blog will definitely be a process of trial and error, so hang with me as I get this thing up and running and looking more snazzy!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Visions of Sugar Plums

With Thanksgiving less than a week away, thoughts of Christmas are already filling my head. December just might be my favorite month of the year because of all of the fun holiday activites. Here are some of my favorite things about Christmas time:

Christmas parties like this.

A chance to see the Sugar Plum Fairy.

Going home for the holidays.

Remembering the true meaning of Christmas.

Listening for the sound of reindeer on the roof.

Believing Christmas can bring out the best in people, even the Grinches.

Making delicious goodies to share with family and friends.

What are your favorite things about the holidays?