Friday, December 31, 2010

new years, shrimp & grits, and gooey cake....

Kaz and I have a tradition of making Shrimp & Grits every New Years! We have made this since we've been married! My uncle "Vester" said it's the best meal I've ever cooked! I like to think this is one of my "specialities"! This year for dessert we are going to make OOOOEY Gooey Butter Cake! Yummmmm, Yummmmmm!

Below are the recipes:
Creamy Shrimp & Grits
Creamy Grits[this is for 1 serving-I usually triple it]
1 cup water                  1 cup half and half
2 oz butter                         3/4 quick grits

In a small saucepan combine the water, milk and butter. Add salt[just enough to taste]. Bring to a simmer and add the grits. Cook over medium low heat for 10-15 minutes until grits are tender. Grits should have the same consistency as oatmeal.

4 stripes of bacon sliced in 1/4 pieces              3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 lb peeled & deveined small shrimp                               1/4 cup of flour
2 peeled diced tomatoes                                        1 1/2 cups half & half

Cook bacon until crisp in a saute pan. Add shrimp to the bacon[leave a little bacon grease] and cook until shrimp just begins to firm up. Dust the mixture with flour and stir until well blended. Add tomatoes and half & half. Stir until well blended. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately over grits!

Gooey Butter Cake

1 Box yellow cake mix
1 stick butter, let soften
2 eggs
Heat oven to 350. Blend together and spread in 9X13 inch baking pan.

1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese
4 Cups confectioners sugar
2 eggs
Blend together and pour over batter in pan. Bake 30 minutes.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

pine trees and snow...

Before we left Patrick SC to come back to Charleston, we got quite a pleasant surprise! It SNOWED! I love snow BUT I also love being at my parents when it snows too:) I have so many fun memories from when I was younger in the snow! My granddad was a farmer so our family has a good bit of land and it's absolutely gorgeous in the snow!
 My dad kept eating the snow off the limbs...

 Miley LOVES snow! Every time she's been in it she has had a blast! She eats it and if we throw snowballs at her she will catch it and shake her head until all the snow is gone! It's quite funny!

 This is my FAVORITE picture in the country. Straight rows of pine trees that you can see through as you drive by. I LOVE LOVE LOVE seeing this! BUT I ALSO have a strong dislike for pine trees....Again my granddad was a farmer and owned a plant nursery. He planted and raised pine trees and then when they were fully grown would have them cut down and the process would start over. When I was 13 it was time to plant new trees. MY DAD thought it would be a good idea to LEAVE OUT about 100k, YES I SAID THAT RIGHT, of trees so our family could plant them together! He thought it would be a growing process for us to plant them instead of a machine. Needless to say it took many afternoons and weekends to finish this! Me and my cousins were all in high school or college AND WE JUST WANTED to get the trees planted! This is how it worked: 1 person would dig the hole, 1 carried the box of trees, and the other would put the tree in the ground. 3 people worked together. Me, my cousin Pam, and cousin william were a team. WE GOT THE BRILLIANT IDEA to plant multiple trees in a hole so all the trees would be planted!!!! Sometimes we put 2 in a hole, SOMETIMES we put 3, AND OTHER TIMES we put 4! HAHA! We think it's dad on the other hand found out a couple years ago when the trees started to grow! While walking through the woods we found one of those multiple trees! I couldn't resist taking a picture!
 2 pine trees! I think this was a brilliant idea!
 My pet goat Leroy!
 No one else was interested in making snow angels!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

christmas eve...

We had a great Christmas! This was the first Christmas Eve in 3 years that I've been able to spend with my family, because every year prior I had to work at Seacoast Christmas Eve services. I was so happy to know that I would be home this Christmas Eve:)
I LOVE Christmas Eve with my family[Kaz would say the same for his family]! We have a lot of traditions! First, my whole family met around 830am to eat breakfast at Roses[It's a department store but the one in Hartsville has a little cafe!] They MAKE THE BEST thin biscuits I've ever had!
After we went to Wal-Mart to walk around! We bought last minute stocking stuffers and walked around to see people we know:) [small town:)]
After Wal-Mart, Kaz and I both went running in Hartsville[He ran 9, I ran 7]. That night we went to my aunt Joyce's for dinner! You could call me the practical joker of the family...I love scaring my aunt, cousin, mom, really whoever I can! Last year I got my cousin Ryan REALLY REALLY good. SO GOOD that he has tried ever since to scare the mess out of me. WELL, I got him again christmas eve night along with my mom. I didn't mean to scare her she just happened to be there at the exact time Ryan was. I KNOW ONE DAY VERY SOON he will get me...AND I'M SURE when that day comes I'm going to need to change my pants if you know what I mean. It's been a LONG time coming!
I LOVE LOVE LOVE Christmas Eve! Below are a few pictures!
Me, Kaz, mom and dad
 Me and Kaz at Roses
 Mom and Dad at Roses
 Dad and I make rice crispy treats every year! We've done that since I've been a little girl! My favorite time to eat them is when they are hot! So usually right after we make them a big chunk is gone:)

 Miley begged the whole time we fixed them!
 Me and my cousin Ryan on Christmas Eve
 Me, Ryan, and his sister Kelsey

 We were trying to do a "mug shot" Didn't work too well!
 Me, Ryan, and my cousin Joe. I was wearing Ryan's hat! 

 Mug shot with all of Ryan's brothers and sisters![Casey, Lance, Ryan, me and Kelsey]

 Miley loved chewing her bone right in the middle of all the christmas paper!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

it's been awhile....

It's been awhile since my last post! I spent all last week at my parents house and tried to take a break from the computer[except business of course!]. It was a great week being at home, seeing old friends, and spending time with family! Kaz was able to join us on Thursday after work and that made it even better!
I've mentioned several times my friend Mr. Billy but never really told you anything about him...
He is a special special man to me. We met in high school and I fell in love with him. Mr. Billy and his wife Sarah are very dear to me and have played a part in so many big events in my life. Both of my granddads passed away when I was very young, so Mr. Billy is like a granddad to me. I love going to see him and Mrs. Sarah when I'm at home. Mr. Billy just moved to a nursing home so I was able to see him twice while I was at home. The first time was with my mom. While talking with him he "mentioned" that if it wasn't too much trouble he would love for me to make him some pumpkin bread:)
The 2nd time we went to see him was one of the most special memories that I will always remember...Growing up my grandmother[Nanny] loved visiting people in the nursing home. As a family we would go, bring the residents in a big communal room, and sing hymns to them. I've always remembered doing that and we got to do it again for Mr. Billy[me, my dad, mom, and good friend Brittainy]. As time passed, more and more residents joined us and it was a very special time. Mr. Billy cried almost the whole time, but he loved it. To see a short video click here!
Before we left Santa Clause made a surprise visit! 

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

ROCKY start....

today started off ROCKY....and it's only 630 in the morning!
I woke up to Kaz telling me the pipes were frozen because we both forgot to drip the water last night! My first thought was OH NO! Now, remember He woke me up to tell me this. The ONE day this week that I HAVE to take a shower and I can't!  LET ALONE, YOU have to take a shower! YOU JUST RAN 5 MILES! OH BOY! I wasn't happy. I showed NO GRACE and really made him feel bad. I didn't mean too, I was just going crazy because we have to go to Columbia today AND really NEED a SHOWER! AND then there's Miley. She had no water to drink!
I heard Kaz go into the laundry room to get a white shirt out of the dryer that I washed last night and then I thought...OH NO I forgot to put them in the dryer!
I guess I can't be mad at him anymore! SO we started over! It's one of our little fun things to do....and we can usually laugh about the situation then! THIS TIME we both messed up!
SO WHAT TO DO NOW? Kaz didn't have time to go to the gym to take a shower....Our neighbors weren't up....SOOOO we went to desperate measures! He had to wipe down with these! Ha-Ha

Always Feminine Wipes - Feel fresh and clean all day, every day

He put on plenty of deodorant and lacoste cologne AND took his toothbrush to work! I haven't figured out my plan yet but I STILL have a few hours!

Praise the Lord! His love overflows with grace...
Ephesians 2:8 "For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God."

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


I'm giving you my heart, and all that is within
I lay it all down for the sake of you my King
I'm giving you my dreams, I'm laying down my rights
I'm giving up my pride for the promise of new life
I surrender all to you Lord.....

Sunday, December 12, 2010

the last few days...

The last few days have been VERY busy! Wed was my last day at Seacoast. It was harder to leave than I ever thought it would be. I have so much enjoyed working there the last 3 years but felt the Lord calling me to full time photography! I'm so excited for the journey ahead but it was sad to say goodbye. To celebrate my office took me bowling!
This is the whole crew....
and my good buddy Jean. We walked to the gas station next door to Seacoast EVERY day! 

Wed night Kaz and I went out to celebrate my birthday! We went to the dock street theater and watched A Christmas Carol. It was SO much fun! I have always wanted to go to this theater and we have decided it is now a new christmas tradition of ours! We had dinner at Mellow Mushroom before, and just had a fun date night!!!!

This weekend my parents came into town to celebrate! We of course ate! I feel like I should have gained 30 pounds the last few days as much as I've had to eat AND as many sweets as I've had! SO needless to say, tomorrow I will be eating salad and running at least once, maybe twice! 

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

today is the day….

Today is a BIG day…for several reasons!
1. Today is the last day of my accounting job. While I’m relieved to only be doing full time photography now, it’s very sad and hard to say goodbye. The last 3 years of working at Seacoast have been incredible BUT I know the Lord has amazing things in store for my business. I’m excited for a break in the next few weeks because this year has been absolutely crazy! I’m surprised I don’t have more gray hair and wrinkles than what I do!

2. Today is the last day I will ever be 27:( 30 is creeping up on me. Do you ever get confused at how old you are? I do all the time! People will ask and I usually have to stop and think about it! My parent’s anniversary is always 1 year higher than my age. It was their anniversary this past weekend and Kaz asked how many years it had been. My response “26” Um…NO! He started laughing. Age is a confusing thing! I can’t keep up!

3. Today is A FULL MONTH without any soda! I feel great! Yes, I still want it but I have to keep fighting through that! I’m determined to have a healthier lifestyle.

Today is a BIG day…for many other reasons besides just these 3! I’m excited to see what the Lord has in store for me in this 28th year of my life!

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

be my everything...

God in my living
There in my breathing
God in my waking
God in my sleeping

God in my resting
There in my working
God in my thinking
God in my speaking
God in my hoping

There in my dreaming
God in my watching
God in my waiting
God in my laughing
There in my weeping
God in my hurting
God in my healing

Monday, December 06, 2010


I was talking to Kaz last week about where my heart is with 1 person in particular. We get along well most of the time, but I feel like there is so much jealously and competition in this particular relationship. I bite my tongue a lot, but it gets old. So finally, I stood up for myself and after just felt horrible. There was no reason for me to lash out, because the comment thrown at me was ridiculous to begin with! So petty!

It really bothered me all last week. I don’t want tension or bitterness to be in any relationship I have. So, it really upset me. Why did I have all these negative feelings, better yet, how do I move forward in peacemaking? How do I let go of these thoughts and feelings, so that it doesn’t destroy me as a person or affect my relationship with Kaz? I talked with a good friend about it and her response was, I have no idea. I’m in a similar situation. That’s why you pay for counseling! I thought it was really funny and laughed every time I thought about it but it didn’t help me.

A day or two later I saw this quote on facebook. My answer, plain as day! "People are often unreasonable and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.... For you see, in the end, it is between you and God. It never was between you and them anyway."-Mother Theresa
That quote hit me deep in my core. If it was true, and I knew it was, what was my problem with God? The answer is still outstanding. I’ve thought about it over and over and over. I think it goes hand in hand with peace. I can’t have peace in different areas of my life while there is sin in that area. I can pray until I’m blue in the face for this person and situation but if my heart is wrong and sinful towards them, we can’t have a peaceful relationship. The Lord has really been working in my heart the last couple days in this area. I don’t have the answers, but I know He will continue showing them to me and it honestly may not be very pretty:(

Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.
(Psalm 34:14)

The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand.
(Psalm 37:23,24)

Peace, I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
(John 14:27)

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
(Matthew 5:9)

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Blog to book?

I've seriously LOVED blogging. It has been a great way for me to express my thoughts and feelings, AND also keep a journal. I decided to have my blog printed into a book so that I could keep it! I plan to do this for as many years as I blog! I just placed the order through Blurb AND I'm SO excited! The book was 186 pages and only $60! I thought it would be at least $100! I can't wait for it to come in:) I really enjoyed looking back through some of the silly things I blogged about it and honestly probably would have never remembered them with it! SO here's to blogging!

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

a little bit of everything…...

-I LOVE CSN stores! I cannot stop looking at all of the wonderful items they have! CSN Stores has over 200 online stores where you can find everything from stylish furniture, to a leather briefcase, or great cookware! I especially love looking at all the baby items and have created a “wish list” :)

-We had a great thanksgiving. Kaz’s brother Peter [wife Emily and baby Matias] along with his dad Cy, came in to stay with us. They stayed for about 4 days. While they were here we shopped a little, ate a LOT, and were able to take a few pictures!

-All of the stress is finally catching up with me. I now officially have about 30 gray hairs:( You can see them all on the top of my head:( I’m ONLY 27 well at least for a few more days anyway!

-Running, Running, Running. That’s what I’ve been doing a lot of! Thanksgiving morning Kaz and I ran 8 miles! This week I’m up to 9 miles! I’ve really enjoyed training for the half marathon:) AND the best part….I wore a pair of jeans on Saturday that I haven’t fit into in the last 2 years!

-Last night, Kaz and I had a little date:) He cooked spaghetti and we watched the blind side! One of my favorite movies:)

-My sweet Miley mopes around all the time and is SPOILED! She’s spent a good amount of time this last month at my parent’s house and they SPOIIL her rotten. They feed her marshmallows ALL the time! This is a picture my dad sent me over Thanksgiving! She’s spoiled rotten!

-Hello Chicago! We are going to Chicago some of Christmas! I LOVE visiting! I’m trying to think of new things to do besides shop down Michigan Ave! Do you know of anything I should do while I’m there? Well, besides of course put on my celebrity goggles and look for Juliana and Bill Rancic :) Ha!