So Long, 2013!

So long, 2013. What a year you have been!











The craziest, busiest, SWEETEST year yet. 
So grateful for the past year. 
So excited and expectant for what the Lord has in store for the next one.

"For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God." Hebrews 11:9

Thanks for reading! Happy new year to you!

Hittin' the Road.

Happy Lord's day!

Happy 3 days til Christmas!

We've got the car packed.

We've bathed and combed our hair/fur.

We got our nails trimmed.

We are ready to head to the Carolinas to see our family! 

"Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
and his courts with praise
give thanks to him and praise his name
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
His faithfulness continues to all generations."
Psalm 100: 4-5

A Columbus Christmas.

Happy Saturday, Dear Friends!

Last night, we went on base to celebrate Christmas with some of our Air Force Family. It was so great to have some down time and be able to spend some time together. I am so thankful for them!

We had appetizers and wine, sang carols, and had a gift exchange. We even got to take pictures with the frame and props a friend had in place. Too cute.

A great group of fun-loving women. Pilot's wives, dentist wives..and dentist herself! woop!

Andrew was so excited to wear his poinsettia turtleneck! ;)

Tonight, we are celebrating our FIRST married Christmas! Is that lame to get excited about? Well, too bad, because I am!

We're going out to a fun dinner, looking at lights, gift swapping, and watching It's a Wonderful Life.

Through the ups and downs this year has brought, it's so nice to know all the way our savior has lead us! It surely is a wonderful life. We are so blessed, indeed!

Merry Christmas! I sure love y'all,

Friday Favorities: Advent.

As I mentioned earlier, I have been doing the "Rediscovering Christmas" Bible reading plan from YouVersion. I wanted to share with y'all some of my favorite verses that I've read this month.

"In him was LIFE, and that life was the LIGHT of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness cannot overcome it." John 1:4-5

"So I say to you: ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you." Luke 11:9

"But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might redeem adoption to sonship. Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts. The Spirit who calls out Abba, Father. So you are no longer a slave, but God's child..." Galations 4:6-7

"Ah sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you." Jeremiah 32:17

"The word became flesh and made its dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only son, who came through the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:14-15

"'Come now, let us settle the matter,' says the Lord
Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow
though they are as red as crimson they shall be like wool"
Isaiah 1:18


Praise God for the gift of Jesus! Praise God for his goodness and grace. Thank you, God, for loving us even when we feel we least deserve it. Thank you for calling us your own and giving us abundant life!

Cooking with my neighbors' leftovers.

Our sweet neighbors left us a few weeks ago to move to Texas. I am so excited for them to start a new chapter of life, yet I was sad to see them go.

Well, aside from lifelong friendships and good memories, they also left us with a bunch of pantry and freezer items they could not take on their trip. Nothing like some free groceries to lift your spirits! ;) I decided to get a little creative and find ways to use up our newly-acquired loot. This would make some great meals in your home as well, so I wanted to share them in a small, non-professional photos included, roundup. Happy cooking!

Some dry beans and spices = Easy Veggie Chili (pictured above)
My go-to for wintertime get-togethers. This time around I added some ground turkey. With this recipe, you can just kind of wing it, switching out the type of beans and veggies at your heart's desire. Yummmmm comfort.

Some frozen chicken breasts and olive oil dressing = Barefoot Contessa's Lemon Chicken
A lot of times it's hard for me to find a baked chicken breast recipe that doesn't come out dry (yuck). So this is on a constant rotation in our home. I've started skipping the saute step and just throwing everything in the baking pan (please don't tell Ina)! I have made it the "original" way before and they come out the same either way...and that way is delicious!

Some dry beans and quinoa = Quinoa Stuffed Peppers
A Meatless Monday first that packed more "beef" than our regular meaty meals! Filled with quinoa and beans (hello, protein-packed fiber-fest), this dish had me full after half a pepper and some salad. This also made for great lunches! I left out the cilantro, feta, and diced tomatoes from the original recipe (while adding extra cheese, per usual) and they were still perfect.

A bottle of sriracha and a bag of white rice = Sriracha Glazed Turkey Meatballs.
Clearly that is not the best picture, but these were WONDERFUL. Annnnnnd, this is a recipe I followed exactly! Can ya believe it? If you're looking for some spicy, sweet, yummy goodness, make this one!

A jar of pesto and some more frozen chicken = One dish pesto bake
I used the popular recipe floating around social media for this one. Except, for the Italian seasoning, I subbed half a jar of pre-made basil pesto. Holy moly, GOOD.

What have you been cooking lately? Anything new and exciting?

Rachel, this amazing post is dedicated to you. Laugh! Thank you for being my friend and for giving me groceries. I miss you very much and wish I could come eat some Tex-Mex with you!

Love y'all, 

Much Needed Mini-Vaca.

Sweet friends,

I apologize for my lack of posts recently! (this is where you pretend to notice) I really have no excuse. :)

Either way, this week will be one of an attempted catch-up. 

This past weekend was one filled with friends, family, and Christmas delight. I will admit the week prior was somewhat taxing on my man and me. We both had long work weeks, and well, we were just...tired.

On Friday, Andrew attended a graduation for one of the pilot training classes he instructed. I was a good military wife and went with him. Sike.I walked to Columbus's Wassail Fest downtown with two friends and fellow graduation-skipping wives. I sure love having the opportunity to live in a fun downtown!

Saturday, we traveled to a family Christmas party outside of Atlanta. Andrew's aunt and uncle hosted the family at their beautiful home (which is also a bed and breakfast!). Oh y'all, how it did my heart SO much good to see and be with family. Many that we haven't seen since our wedding!

We even got to meet the newest and tiniest members of the family! My gracious. The sweetness.

Did I mention MY parents were there as well? My cup. Overflowing.

We were able to spend the night relaxing and then having a delicious Sunday morning breakfast before heading back to the 'Sip. I felt like a queen. Cozy home, comfy bed, wonderful food...cable TV! So grateful.

So lovely and serene. Sad to leave!

I am so thankful for the grace God has so immensely poured out onto me via my loved ones. He is so good to our hearts when they need it the most!

Merry Christmas, friends-

The Weary World Rejoices!

It's quite the sweet little scene over at our house.

Jesus came to earth to give us hope and life! We are expectant and we are blessed.

We got our hand-me-down tree trimmed and topped with a makeshift burlap bow.

Scout was a little unsure at first (like, hello, you're on my bed). 
However, she has been keeping those puppy teeth clear of tempting ornaments and packages.

Speaking of presents, they are all purchased, wrapped, and bagged.
Amazingly, I also placed all our cards in the mail. We are making strides! Woop!

The rest of the house is also sweet and simple.

A beautiful (also hand-me-down) holly wreath on the front door, a jute line of Christmas cards hanging in the kitchen, garland on the mantel, etc. It's so cozy to stare at on rainy nights like these.

Of course I waited and took these pictures at night thinking "It's so beautiful and cheery I am SURE the iphone camera will pick that up!"...not ;)

Saturday, Andrew went deer hunting with my boss (yes, you read that correctly) so of course, I did my chores and immediately cranked up Mariah Carey Christmas and my kitchenaid.

Mariah, seriously girlfriend, after all these years, your version of O Holy Night still gives me chills all the way to my little white girl bottom! 

Oh yea oh yea oh yea ooohoohhhh oh night diviiiine.

Where was I? Oh yea, the Mariah Carey Kitchenaid marathon.
I made eight dozen sugar cookies! Go baby go...

The base has a cookie drive going for single airmen and families with a deployed spouse.
I threw in some airplanes for those sweet ones.

We will also be giving cookies out to our neighbors on our little downtown street.

Learned this- you can add a little karo syrup and cornstarch to buttercream icing to help them harden for stacking. Y'all probably already knew that...

What all are you guys doing for Christmas?
 I hope you're getting to enjoy simple, sweet time with loved ones!

Oh and here ya go....;)

Bible Reading for Advent.

Hi, everyone! I started a great Bible reading plan for Christmas on YouVersion that I thought I would share with you. 

It's called "Rediscovering the Christmas Season" by Life Church. I was searching for something that truly focuses on the meaning of this season-- Jesus! It has been so encouraging to read the Christmas story with new perspective. 

This plan is also great because you can access on computer or phone. I like to have the devotion questions on my phone while reading from my "regular" Bible. I'm still that person who likes to read on paper...can't seem to focus staring at the screen. 

"he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said,
'Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace
according to your word,
for my eyes have seen your salvation
that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples
a light for revelation for the Gentiles
and for glory to your people Israel"
Luke 2:29-32

"This season is about resetting Jesus Christ at the center of our lives. After all, when He comes to take us home forever, we want to be ready. Expect to be inspired, challenged, refocused, broken, motivated, unified, encouraged, and most of all expectant."

Praying Jesus would reveal himself to us in new ways this Christmas season! And that we would put down our shopping lists/smart phones/dinner party plans for the time to listen and see!