It is the chocolate and kisses of life that make us rich. Enjoy what brings a smile to my face and love to my life.....

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Thankful

As the holidays approach, the days in which we all celebrate with our loved ones and give thanks, I smile to myself. Not only because I am excited to have wonderful food surrounded by the ones I love, but because I am extremely grateful for many great things. I feel many blessings surrounding me, and while holidays are wonderful, I am thankful that I am able to be grateful every day for what I have been given.

I am blessed with this incredible life, my health, and the love of the most beautiful people.

There are many gifts that I have been given that I love, but there is one that I cherish the most. I have been given the gift of my husband. A man I can't even begin to describe. He is selfless, loving, compassionate, intelligent, and so unaware of what he brings to so many of our lives. He is the perfect son, the most loving husband, and those who are blessed to know him, know what a kind soul he has. My life is better because his presence has made me a better person. I am forever grateful for what he has taught me and how I've been shown what love really is.

I wouldn't be able to love my husband with my whole heart, if I wasn't shown how by the most beautiful woman in my life. I am beyond thankful for my momma. She has always been and will always be my reason for life. She gave me my first breath, she has been my strength when I have been at my weakest, she is my very best friend. I am the person I am today because she has always shown me how to treat people, how to love, and how to be strong through the hardships. I have never met someone with such a selfless drive to help others, to open her heart for those in need, to always give more to people than she even has, without expectations. She fills my life with beauty, hope, and endless amounts of love. I am not only grateful for my momma, I am proud and honored to say that she is MY mom.

Along with having a mother that I am forever blessed with, she has also given me someone who I was able to grow up with, and continue to as the years pass by. We go through so many different stages in life and if you are lucky, you have a sister to experience these moments with. While not all our moments in our childhood were spent in perfect harmony, nothing puts a bigger smile on my face than the mischief and adolescent fights we got into. That was the start of the most beautiful friendship, one that I hold dear to my heart and continue to cherish in our adulthood. We have seen each other through dark times, and been there right by each others sides as we embark on life's most beautiful moments, marriage and the birth of my first nephew. I could not imagine a better older sister to look up to and hope that there are many more laughs and memories to be made in our future.

While I look to the future for hopefully more blessings, I can't help but reminisce about the past. I am so thankful for my grandparents, who were a huge part of my childhood. Not a day goes by that I don't remember them or picture their beautiful faces. They always showered me with so much love and affection, supporting me in all my endeavors. I miss them terribly every day and often find when I'm struggling, that their faces pop into my mind when I close my eyes tight, without even trying. They comfort me even though they are not here, and I can't describe how grateful that makes me.

I have pictured them a lot over the past 2 1/2 years, having been given a struggle I never imagined. While at first I couldn't find my strength or poise, I now am able to say that I am thankful for our struggles. It has made me realize how blessed I truly am, it has humbled me and it has allowed me to grow into a better person. As my husband and I travel this journey together, not all days are easy. Some days I feel I am losing my way, but I remind myself all the time, that in his time, all things are made beautiful. I am able to look to my husband for the strength I may not feel, and know that through every obstacle our relationship grows and gets stronger. I cannot ask for anything more than what I am already blessed with.

I look forward to what this life has to offer me, and hope that I can always see the beauty that is surrounding me.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Staycation & Enchilada Pasta Casserole

Why do I go in spurts? Once fall and the cooler seasons hit, I have this sudden urge to write. During the spring and summer, not so much!

I've had a great summer though, and spent lots of time with the ones I love! I've cooked some great new recipes and I'm excited to share :-)

We've been on a staycation for the past 7 days, and it has been so refreshing as well as fun! I love spending time with my husband and I am grateful for the memories we have made.

We have done lots of store browsing, some shopping, had some dates and we went to the zoo yesterday!

The weather was beautiful, and I loved seeing all the animals. My favorite being the gorillas. I could watch them all day. Each one, with a different personality, always reminding me of someone I know. Such as this guy.

That is exactly how my husband falls asleep on the couch. This guy was lazy.

My only complaint for this week, that as always it's going by way too fast!

I will leave with a new recipe, I've been loving me some mexican flavors lately so I hope you enjoy!!

Enchilada Pasta Casserole



Ingredients
2 tbsp olive oil
1 lb ground beef or turkey
1 medium onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
5 oz cream cheese
1 jar (12 oz) red enchilada sauce
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups shredded pepper jack cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup frozen corn, thawed
1 small can diced green chiles
12 oz wide egg noodles
salt & pepper to taste

Directions
Cook egg noodles to package directions. Heat olive oil in a large saute pan, saute onion and red pepper until soft. Add minced garlic and saute until fragrant for 1-2 minutes. Add ground beef and cook until meat is browned. Season with chili powder, cumin, cayenne, salt & pepper to your liking. Next, add cream cheese to your beef mixture and allow to melt, stirring to combine. Meanwhile, in a bowl mix enchilada sauce, sour cream, corn, green chiles, 1/2 cup cheddar cheese and 1 cup pepper jack cheese. Then mix the beef mixture, egg noodles and enchilada sauce mixture together and place in a baking dish. Top with remaining cheese and broil in the oven until cheese is melt and slightly browned.


Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Happy Birthday to My Sister Friend!

For many years throughout our childhood, I always felt like my sister stole my spotlight. It makes me laugh to think about it now. Her birthday is two days before mine and she always turned a "better" age than me (in my eyes, of course!) She is three lovely years older than me.

When I turned 10, she became a teenager. When I became a teenager, she had her sweet sixteen. When I turned 18, she was drinking herself to oblivion at the ripe age of 21!

When she got her first car, I got a saddle. This right here is a memory that will always remain in my mind. It makes me snicker. Her first car was kind of a shit mobile and when I was handed my first  riding saddle, the thought that went through my head...."what is this? This isn't pretty!" What a rotten little girl I was!

Sharing birthday parties with her didn't really become enjoyable until my 21st birthday. We took a bus to the city and rocked that shit. It was a fabulous time.

As the years go on, I've enjoyed having a birthday close to my sister. It's our own little special time every year to celebrate. As we get older, I appreciate my sister more and more.

So today, I wish my sister friend the best birthday ever.... and I'm sure with this little man, she'll have a great one! Me love you lots and lots!


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