Perfectly Planned: Planning for a new year!

I always enjoy the holidays. A cozy time of year with friends and family and the excitement of a new year is just around the corner. Who knows what new adventures we will go on in 2017. With those adventures comes the opportunity to plan new activities, set new goals and start a new. The hard part is maintaining the enthusiasm during the rest the year. The human spirit is resilient. We start over even if we fail. 

What will you start in the new year?

My focus areas, new and old, are: health and fitness, family, organization (planners, house, work), photography and reading!

Cheers to a prosperous 2016 holiday season and and enthusiasm start to 2017!

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Race Recap: Monster Dash 5k

It’s Halloween Time! What a better time to dress up in costume  AND dress your dog up in costume! As you can see below, Bella loves being in costume…or at least that is what I tell myself.

 

We had just gotten back from Italy the night before. I was worried I’d be too tired to run the Monster Dash, luckily jet lag was on the races side and we woke up at 5 am ready to hit the ground running. The weather was warmer than expected but it was still a lovely day! We thought our costumes and our secret weapon (the adorable mushroom) would take the cake! I love dressing up for races and this year’s costumes were an awesome Mario & Luigi & Mushroom combo.  And as the weather gets cool, I expect my 5k times to get faster!

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Bella in a pig costume

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Our little mushroom.

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Maria, Luisa and ‘Shroom

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Luigi, Mushroom & Mario

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Mustaches in place and ready to race!

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Momma and Snugget

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Post-race Sucuess!

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Mario & a Pig

The results are in...

The results are in…

 

Adventures in Killing Plants: Homemade Fig Newtons

We have a very large fig tree in our back yard. It’s been growing for many years so there’s a good chance it will survive having me as a care taker. The first thing I wanted to try was making fig newtons. I like fig newtons for breakfast and fresh figs should make them better.  Below are some pictures of the process of making the cookies and the recipe. They turned out to be very tasty!

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Fresh Figs from our tree.

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Squishy chopped figs.

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Lots of Chopped Figs!

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Rolling out the fig crust.

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Mushy Figs

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Pan with Newton Crust

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Figs ready for baking!

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Homemade Fig Newtons

Fig Newtons (Homemade)

 


INGREDIENTS

    • 1 lb dried figs or 2 lbs fresh figs
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 1 cup water (1 c. for dried figs, 1/2 c. for fresh)
    • 1/2 cup butter, room temp
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 1 large egg
    • 1 tablespoon cream or 1 tablespoon milk
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 3/4 cups flour

INSTRUCTIONS

    1. Dice figs, soak in water 1 hour.
    2. Add sugar & cook on medium heat until of thin jam consistency.
    3. Beat sugar, butter, egg, milk & vanilla until well blended.
    4. Add dry ingredients.
    5. Mix well and refrigerate for 1 hour.
    6. Place 1/2 on well floured dough cloth; knead about 6 times.
    7. Roll out to 1/4″ thick. Line 13 x 9″ glass baking dish; cover with figs.
    8. Roll remaining dough, cover figs. Cook at 350° for 30 minutes.
    9. Let cool and cut into squares. Depending on the size you cut you can get a couple dozen cookies.

GIrls Weekend 2013 – Wilmington, NC

For our 2013 Girls Weekend, the OU ChE Girls went to Wilmington NC June 27-30. We rented a 4 bedroom house for all of the girls and families to stay. We spent the weekend hanging out, going to the beach, eating, going to the aquarium and sleeping in. Well we slept in, one of the advantages of not having any kids. It was a super fun weekend and it was nice to catch up with everyone. And hopefully I’ll find time to upload mine and everyone’s pictures into a nice photobook!

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Michelle and Dylan at the beach.

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Krista and Drew Lusby at the beach.

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Bree and Tyler Trembly at the beach.

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Tim and I before dinner.

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Wilmington River Walk

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Krista Lusby, Bree Trembly, Alexia Finotello and Michelle Chung

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Tim & I at the River Walk

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An Adult Beverage

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Alligator at the Aquarium

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Hurricane Force Winds at the Aquarium.

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With the hubby at the beach.

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Big bad Daddy’s Restaruant

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Everyone at the House