Wednesday, June 29, 2016

lime and tan

last night, i had the amazing pleasure of seeing a good friend win their local election. after months of hard work and dedication, she'd finally been named the new councilwoman of her ward. hopefully she's made her big announcement by the time this post is up, but just in case, i won't use her name. but, i am so unbelievably happy for her and can't wait to see what she does in her district. she truly is the embodiment of leslie knope (a parks and rec reference) in all the greatest ways. 

congrats again dear! 

Monday, June 27, 2016

just us gals

about a couple of weeks ago, my mil and i had a gals night out. it was the classic summertime date filled with a couple of burgers + shakes, and a chick flick. 

i always love seeing her, but it felt extra special to get this one-on-one time together. we could talk about anything and everything without interruption. this made me realize how rare my relationship is with my mil. too often i know people who have a strained, or at best, cordial relationship with their in-laws. but, i don't feel that way - quite the opposite, which makes me treasure the relationship and time we have together all the more. 


the movie - a tear-jerker, surprise, surprise. the food - delicious and indulgent. and the company - absolutely wonderful. not only was our night out a blast, but i have a sneaking suspicion there will be more in the future :)

Monday, June 20, 2016


[pug of my dreams]

today marks the summer solstice aka the longest day of the year aka the official beginning of summer. even though it starts today, we decided to kick things off early over the weekend. we celebrated a sweet friend's birthday, grilled up burgers and brats, played corn hole and giant jenga, sipped cocktails in the pool, had a classic movie marathon, and played a killer round of nighttime hide and go seek during a storm. it was perfect, and fun, and kind of the best (hold the kinda). summertime, you are some kind of wonderful.

here's what's been going on in our neck of the woods as of late...

[sunday dinner al fresco]

[picking up take out]

[happy pup after rolling in fresh-cut grass]

[post-hot yoga bliss]

[thursday egg delivery + bonus treat]

[workday sun break]

[weeknight grilling]

[all the local things]

[going away cookout for a close friend]

[first try at thai cooking]

[extra colorful workout]

[birthday desserts (above and below)]

[cranky boba]

[gorgeous skies]

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

mount scott

sometimes a change of plans can lead to something even better. last satuday, alex and i were to check out a wine and yoga class we'd signed up for. sadly, the class had been cancelled last minute and we were trying to come up with another bestie date idea. our unofficial terms were that it had to be outdoors, new to us both, help us break a sweat, and be equally (or as close as can be) exciting to us as our cancelled class. 

then, we thought of it - a sunrise hike in the wichitas up mount scott to take in the gorgeous views followed by breakfast. 

even though i had been to the wichitas, i'd never been up to mount scott nor made a sunrise hike. so, i was all too thrilled for our 'venture.

[gorgeous views at every turn]

the 3 mile hike up was exhausting, but filled with countless gorgeous views. as hard as the uphill hike, you'd think we had a terrible time, but we couldn't stop laughing. nor could we stop singing, "eye of the tiger", or "we are the champions". one of my favorite moments had with my best for sure. 

[tree pose at the top]

then, we were finally at the top, reaping the reward of our hard work. stunning views at every turn that made our efforts all the more worth it. watching the sun change the colors of the sky, the lake, the mountains, and all the rollings hills therein. it was...perfect.

[happy girls]

after a break to relax and hydrate, we made our way back down. but not before seeing the true distance of our journey. it's funny, we spent the whole time focused on the goal ahead that we didn't see how far we had come. there's a life lesson in there i think ;)

[all those blues]

then, it was finally off to breakfast and one amazing nap. happy hump day!

Monday, June 13, 2016

food in movies

this month's food in movies was my pick, and i decided to go with a longtime favorite of mine, ratatouille. when i thought of this movie, there were two dishes that caught my curiosity - both by remy the rat. the first was of course his creamy potato soup, and last, but certainly not least, was his ratatouille. because remy's ratatouille was so outstanding as to wow the likes of anton ego, the world-renown food critic, it had to be the dish i'd make.

[my mandoline aka the real mvp]

i knew this dish would be a test of my skills, but thanks to a great recipe breakdown, it was pretty straightforward. plus, having a mandoline really keeps this from being more work than reward. 

[gorgeous colorful slices]

then, the real production came...assembling the dish. this, of all the steps, took the longest (surprise, surprise). i wondered if i'd be able to get it to look as neat as remy's, but then, i looked down and it was finished. and it looked even better than i imagined! 

[T making chicken parm to go with our dish]

then we added some thyme from our herb garden, covered it with parchment paper, and put it in the oven. the scents were absolutely divine, but i have to say, i was still nervous to see how it would come out. 

[removing the parchment paper]

and, as you can see, it was beautiful. i don't think i've ever been so happy or impressed with how a recipe looked. i honestly couldn't stop marveling over it or pinching myself that i'd (with the help of T) made that. i felt like a real cook.

["not everyone can cook, but a great cook can come from anywhere" - auguste gusteau]

the dish, and the movie were everything i wanted and then some. i couldn't get over how flavorful it was considering how simple it was to make. i'd been so worried thinking it wouldn't have much to it and it felt too simple. but now i can see why it made the impression it did on ego (even T went back for more). 

ratatouille, you have officially made it to my recipe book, and i will most definitely be making you again.

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