Sunday, December 30, 2012

christmastime

I know it is late nearly a week - but merry christmas!  We spent 6 days in Oklahoma visiting our families.  It was wonderful.  Lots of time to visit, great food, and no thoughts of work or school at all!  The only sad part was that we got no snow in northern Oklahoma and north Texas actually did get snow!  My neighbor texted me a pic of our Texas house with snow just so I could see it.  Maybe we'll get more snow here in January or February!  Fingers crossed.

One of my favorite ornaments - given to us for our wedding by family friends.

All decorated!

Fun holiday things to do each day before Christmas.

Recipe cards written by my mom and grandma.  There was LOTS of baking going on.

The tree at my parent's house all lit up.

All of the "kids" - the youngest is 17 now!  

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

I hope you had a fantastic holiday.
Best wishes for all to come in 2013!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

mint capped brownie cookie cups

Last night I made a very tasty treat to take to our friend's house tonight: mint capped brownie cookie cups. The recipe was pretty simple and the result is pretty tasty. Not to mention they're pretty photogenic!


Ingredients:

36 Hershey's mint truffle kisses, unwrapped
2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 tbsp water
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
Powdered sugar, for dusting


Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees & line mini muffin pan with foil cups.
Beat together butter, granulated sugar, water, and vanilla with mixer.
Add eggs gradually to the sugar mixture.
In a separate bowl stir flour, cocoa, salt, and baking soda.
Combine wet and dry ingredients until well blended.
Refrigerate dough until firm enough to form into small balls.
Shape dough into balls and place one in each lined muffin cup.
Bake 11-13 minutes until surface is set.  Don't overbake.
Cool slightly on a wire rack and use a sifter to dust with powdered sugar.
Press kisses into center before cups completely cool.
Makes 36-48 depending on size (mine made 36).


Friday, December 14, 2012

holiday approaching

The holidays are approaching so quickly!  Time seems to be flying by for my favorite time of the year, yet work and grad school seem to be dragging on endlessly.  I should actually be grading final papers right now but I had to take a break to blog.

Austin will be home today for almost 3 whole weeks over the holiday break!
I'm super excited and he is too.  It is definitely tough not living together after you've become accustomed to it.  I only wish I didn't have to write a project proposal for grad school over the break.  Oh well, I shouldn't complain about great opportunities, right?

Recent holiday fun-ness (I can use that on here - I'm not writing a scholarly paper so cut me some slack!) has included:

Zoe helping me address Christmas cards:

Spending much time here writing papers and grading papers:
(A friend introduced me to this blog... so awesome)
 

Ponce enjoying the new bed he got (early) for Christmas:

Mailing Christmas cards with awesome holiday stamps:

Filming a cocktail party dance film at my friend Melissa's house: (photo credit to Melissa Sanderson!)

Zoe claiming my gift under the tree (she sleeps here constantly):

What have you been up to this month!?

Sunday, December 2, 2012

merry december

It is that time again. Time to bring out the trees, the wreaths, and the cookies! I'm so excited for the month to come - I've got an early start to my holiday baking. Tuesday I'm going to a neighbor's cookie exchange. I'll be making choco mint snappers. I'm sure once Austin is home for the break I'll be making sugar cookies :)  

picking out a tree with my parents at the Christmas tree farm

Our tree is up!  I think this will be its last year.  
It's had a good run (5 years) but with a few broken branches and empty spots I think a new one will be nice next year!

Dan enjoys sleeping under the tree (and chewing the lower branches).
Zoe likes to sleep IN the tree... 

Made some bon bon cookie's for a friend's Nov 30th birthday :)

Compared to our neighbors, our lights are humble.  But it's not a competition, right?
I like our white lights and wreath :)

Happy December from my home to yours!
(yes, I stole that from Martha Stewart...)

Sunday, November 25, 2012

happy {late} thanksgiving

We had a fantastic trip to Oklahoma for 4 days to visit with family and eat (too much).

Dan cleaning Zoe.

Petting a kitty at the Christmas tree farm.

Ponce and cousin Pete waiting for family to arrive.

5 things I am incredibly grateful for:

1.  My smart, patient, and loving husband, Austin.
2.  My supportive, loving parents.
3.  My three furry babies who equal happiness.
4.  My extended family and the closeness we maintain.
5.  Being ok.  Even when I seem to have it bad, I eventually realize I do not have it bad at all.  I'm quite lucky and have had many amazing opportunities in only 26 years of life!  

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Fun.

I have to share this awesome video one of my fellow MFA-ers made from the Halloween party she and her roomates hosted.  It was super fun (just in case you couldn't tell by the video).  


video by Jessica Hale

Thursday, November 1, 2012

today I turned 26...

'tis true. I'm now closer to 30 than 20. Yikes! I'm excited, though. Things are heading in a good direction...

I had a (mostly) wonderful day at ballet and in rehearsal. My friend Amanda made some tasty cinnamon chocolate chip rice krispies for me and my dance cast gave me flowers and a card. Then I got to hang out with my friends Erika, Erin, and Brittany. We ate at Macdaddy's and had drinks across the street at Lucky Lou's. I have some great friends here in Texas!


In mid-conversation I see Austin walking across the street with a bouquet of roses. He surprised me by coming back to Texas a day early so he could see me on my birthday! So happy :)  


Sunday, October 28, 2012

what if?

Lecture by the great Alan Watts.  
This definitely makes me think.  
How should I spend my time?  What will make a difference?  
What do I desire?  What if money was no object?
Must watch! 


(thanks to my friend Jessica for posting this in a school assignment)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

september highlights

Whew - I've been swamped with school and work lately!
I wasted time adding up how many hours per week I'm busy:
20 working
19 classing
15 rehearsing
6 commuting
 = (not including homework) 60 busy hours 
TOO MUCH!  

September was eventful.  Other than class, rehearsal, and work I try to always make time to play with my furries, bake, and visit friends and family.  Highlights of September:

many hours spent in dance studios at TWU

ponce excited about his new halloween toy

many hours spent grading at the computer

fat cat, tiny cat :)

beautiful september sunset

weekend dinner with friends liz, will, and austin

liz and I made our own all natural facial toner - ahhhh

I made an apple tart with a bundle of apples my mom gave me

enjoyed an evening watching doug varone's dancers in dallas - wowsa

Austin's birthday was on the 5th of October.  We celebrated with friends at Texas Roadhouse in Denton and then visited and had Austin's annual funfetti cake :)  Pics coming soon, they just aren't on my computer yet!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

weekend in waco

I'm pleased to say that I presented my first choreographic work at a dance festival in Waco, Texas this past weekend.  It was the 254 Dance Festival affiliated with the Waco Cultural Arts Fest.  It was a busy weekend and I got behind on work... but it was worth it!  I presented the solo I choreographed in the spring titled "Trivial Pursuits."  You can see it here if you're interested!  I'm so thankful my amazing dancer, Hanna Moore, was able to go to the festival as well.  It was a great experience, I met interesting people, and I got to engage in mini conversations with the audience in Q&A sessions after the shows.  Definitely something I would like to do again.


Waco was such a hip town.  We stayed at a hotel near Baylor University, which was larger than expected.  Common Grounds just happened to be a 30 second walk out our hotel door.  It is the most awesome hipster coffee shop & hangout I've ever seen.  We enjoyed it :)



We ate burgers and shared a milkshake at Health Camp.  Clever owners.  We ate actual healthy bites at Terry & Jo's Food for Thought by the university.  Tasty!  We also took my dancer out for Italian food at Portofino's.  



We walked around the arts festival happening outdoors.  Austin embraced his true Texan and I enjoyed the pretty views from the bridge.  



I also had to do homework and work while I was there.  I stumbled upon this insightful quote in one of my readings.  Thought I'd share: via Silence by John Cage


 Special thanks to my mom and dad for petsitting our 3 furry babies over the weekend!

How was your weekend?  Been to any fun festivals or happenings lately?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

good music

I've had the first two rehearsals for my choreography this week and I am very excited to see where this work ends up.  It has shifted drastically from my starting point or concept, but I feel good about letting the work make itself.  Today we started playing around with music and I am currently hooked on "Svanire" by Ludovico Einaudi.  


I'll report back in a few months, hopefully with a great dance to go along with this...

Sunday, September 9, 2012

encounters at the end of the world

I highly recommend this documentary.  It is informative, breathtaking, amazing, and emotionally moving.  It is interesting to be reminded of how vast our earth is and how tiny our little bubble of life is.  Documentaries like this encourage me to learn more, share with others, and make efforts to better each day of life that does exist.
Bonus: this documentary has some amazing music!



"Through our eyes the universe is perceiving itself.  And through our ears the universe is listening to its causing harmonies.  And we are the witness to which the universe becomes conscious of its glory and magnificence."  -Alan Watts

Thursday, September 6, 2012

texas tab

I got around to creating a new tab for Texas.  I've been here for over a year and we've done a lot in that time.  Check out all of the cool stuff in this area.  And come visit!

Monday, September 3, 2012

doctor who?

Yesterday evening I officially finished watching the entire 6 seasons of Doctor Who.  It is an awesome show - a very British awesome show!  It can be a little cheesy complete with mannequins coming alive to kill people and the uncleverly named "Cybermen"... but I don't mind the cheesiness.  It is clever, interesting, humorous, and fun.  I highly recommend it!

"The future pivots around you.  Here.  Now.  So do good.  For humanity.  And for Earth."  
-The Doctor


"Once every five years everyone chooses to forget what they've learned."  - The Doctor

"When you've eliminated the impossible, whatever remains - however improbable - must be the truth."  -Elliot


"The universe is big.  It's vast and complicated and ridiculous.  And sometimes - very rarely - impossible things just happen and we call them miracles."  
-The Doctor

Sunday, August 26, 2012

let's do this

Year 2 of grad school... here I come!

I've completed 37% of my MFA,
I only have 16 months of coursework to go,
and only 8 more months of theory courses... 
then it is time for my project & professional paper!
Bring it on.



01. Roger Rossell via Pinterest  02. here via Pinterest

Monday, August 20, 2012

this is me



One of my life goals is to run a half marathon.  I started running a few weeks ago and then BAM... the next week I was at the cupcake shop again.  Oops.  

Sunday, August 12, 2012

anniversary date

Since our anniversary fell on a Wednesday this year we had date night the weekend before.  We ate dinner at Ziziki's in Plano (thanks to a gift certificate from my parents) and then got Sprinkles cupcakes.  I'd never been there before but wanted to go since we moved here a year ago.  Oh my goodness they were amazing.  And I'm one tough cupcake judge.

{off to Ziziki's for date night}

{delicious Sprinkles cupcakes}

For our actual anniversary day I went up to Oklahoma City to visit Austin since he has to work up there during the week.  It just happened to storm and knock down numerous huge power lines at my brother's house (which is where Austin stays and was where I was going to stay).  I had Ponce with me so we had to find a pet-friendly hotel.  There goes $100 we weren't planning to spend!  Since we had to check out of the hotel the next day and my brother's house wasn't an option, we had to keep Ponce in the car with us everywhere we went.  Easy lunch decision: Big Truck Tacos!  My friend Erin introduced us to it and we're very thankful for that.  I had made Austin some home made sugar cookies (his favorite) in elephant and heart shapes :)  Tasty. 

{mixing up some sugar cookies}


{home made sugar cookies for austin}

{ponce enjoying his first hotel stay}

Last year the power went out on our anniversary when we lived in Oklahoma City.  The two anniversaries before that we were on vacation and had no problems.  We've decided we'll just have to celebrate our anniversaries on vacations in order to avoid huge power outages...
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