Friday, April 30, 2010

Run for the Roses

One of my life goals is to go to the Kentucky Derby. I know it may sound silly to say this is a "life goal," but it is one of those things that I MUST DO before I die. Both of my parents went to college in Lexington (goooo Wildcats!) so I feel like it is in my blood or something. The food, the flowers, the fashion (hello hats!)... goodness I looove it all! 

Maybe in celebration this weekend I can try out this recipe for Kentucky Derby Pie (my favorite. dessert. of all time.) Happy Derby Days!

sidenote: I made an A in Chinese. Miracle of all miracles. 

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Coffee and Cinnamon

Coffee and cinnamon. Quite possibly the most holy union. And I'm not being dramatic.

My boyfriend loves chocolate and peanut butter, and I won't deny that the duo is quite delectable. We have made chocolate and peanut butter cookies, Reese’s cookies, brownies with a peanut butter swirl… you name it. Actually for his birthday I made a tower of treats (or terror, if you’re figure conscious). It even included homemade peanut butter cups (a terribly excruciating process). All in the name of love

But what really lights my fire is coffee and cinnamon. The depth of flavor is just inexplicable. When I drink my coffee in the morning, a light dusting of cinnamon on top is essential. If truly accentuates all the body of a good, dark roast (the ONLY way to drink coffee is extra bold).

So as I sit here sipping my coffee and nibbling on a cinnamon scone, I am reminded of my mom’s Mexican Coffee Crisps. Heaven in the form of a cookie. I’m going to have to get that recipe from her... 

The perfect image for exam week. (Photo cred. Don'stuff)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Reasons to Smile

I'm having an off day. 

I've narrowed it down to several things...
-Final exams start tomorrow... bleh.
-Yesterday was one of my most favorite friends turned 21. It was fabulous, but it reaffirmed the fact that I am 4 months away from this rite of passage.
-Girl drama. Enough said. 
-I have a 20 page paper (literally) due May 5th... that I am yet to start.
-Mt. Vesuvius relocated to my face (Thanks a lot, stress and hormones. You rock.) 

I'm whiny, cranky, blah. 

When I feel like this it helps to think of some reasons to smile (what up, Pollyanna?). Here's my list.

Reasons to Smile:
-Oreo milkshakes (I tried my first one LAST WEEK. I've always been an M&M girl but oh goodness. Addicted.)
-My mom will ALWAYS take my side
-One week from tomorrow exams and papers will all be a thing of the past... at least temporarily 
-My roommate Jordan. We are kind of in love. 
-"Dancing in the Moonlight" I can't hear this song without feeling a little bit happier. 

Having an off day too? Here's the song just in case! 

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Mother's Day Gift Ideas

“Girls become lovers, who turn into mothers, so mothers be good to your daughters too.” –John Mayer

Mother’s Day is right around the corner, and if your mom is half as awesome as my mom she deserves to be treated like a queen. Here are a few gift ideas for the big day!
If your mom is a coffee lover, or entertains a lot, these coffee cups are perfect! They are simple, elegant, and the double-wall keeps the outside of the glass from getting too toasty. Throw in some of her favorite coffee and this gift will give her the caffeine jolt she needs to keep up with the kids!

For the chef, an herb garden is a fabulous gift. Last year, I purchased several different types of basil at my local farmer's market and planted them in one big pot. My mom was able to use it in fresh pesto, on pizzas, and a million other yummy things all summer long. (It’s the gift that keeps on giving!)

This necklace is gorgeous and is a perfect way for mom to remember all of her “sweet peas.” I have 3 siblings, so 4 peas are perfect for my mom!

This classic children’s book is a timeless favorite! And it will remind mom of the days when she used to read it to you. It’s also a great gift for the mom-to-be. 

If your mom is as fashionable as my mom, this sweater from Anthropologie is perfect! (This color of blue makes my mom’s eyes sparkle, and I love the cute tie in the back!) If this sweater isn’t her style, check out the Mom’s Day gift finder on their website!

You can find another awesome gift guide at The Lil Bee (one of my most favorite blogs!). 

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Picasso- Girl Before a Mirror

I’ll admit it—I don’t know much about art. Ok, I know very little about art. But when I was a sophomore in high school, my English teacher brought in this picture one day. Most of the class continued passing notes or making paper planes or doing whatever high school kids do, but not me. I was completely captivated. I can’t explain it, but from the moment I first laid eyes on this image I was in love. Looking at it I felt like Picasso himself had seen into my soul (gosh do I sound crazy or what?!) In that moment, I understood what people mean when they say “it speaks to me.” Not only did this picture speak to me, it told me my story. 5 years later, this painting still evokes those strong feelings in me.

Art is funny like that. 

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


I’m currently enrolled in Chinese. Yes, like the language. With characters and stuff. It has been pretty difficult, but learning about Chinese culture has been very interesting. Well, tomorrow I have my final test so today will be devoted to cramming my brain with as much info as possible. 

With all this talk of Chinese, I can’t shake the thought of Chinese dumplings (or shuǐ jiǎo) from my mind. I found this recipe on Foodgawker and I might have to give it a try! (The simple instructions AND video make the thought of dumplings less intimidating!) It will have to wait until after I finish my test, of course. Back to the books! Zài jiàn!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My Uniform

I went to a private school for Kindergarten through 12th grade and had the joy of wearing a uniform every day. Looking back, it really wasn't so bad, but at the time I counted down the days until I got to experience full-fledged fashion freedom. Now that I have been at college for 3 years (ahh!) I have established my own uniform of sorts.

My go-to outfit:
Boyfriend tee (a relaxed v-neck)
Skinny jeans
Metallic sandals
... and finish it off with a long, vintage necklace.
(I usually carry a cardigan with me, because I tend to get cold.)

If you ask any of my friends, they will tell you my #1 wardrobe staple would have to be the boyfriend tee. Even though I already own a full spectrum of colors, I can't stop buying more! (Especially since they are so affordable at places like Target and Forever 21... hello guilt-free shopping!) They are easy, comfortable, and forgiving in all the right places when I skimp on crunches at the gym or hit the chocolate soufflé a little too hard. :) 

I just can't get enough of them.

Monday, April 19, 2010

a servant's heart

Last night I was having some quiet time before I went to bed and I was reading in John 13. This chapter tells the story of when Jesus washed his disciples’ feet. If you are unfamiliar with this passage you can read it here:

I’ll give you a quick rundown. Basically, back then everyone wore sandals and the roads were super dusty. The result: yucky, dirty feet. Typically when you would enter someone’s home, one of their servants would wash your feet for you. This was a lowly job and took a lot of humility (obvi). So along comes Jesus. He is having dinner with his closest followers and what does he do?

“He showed them the full extent of his love.” (13:1)

So what does this look like?

He got down on his knees and began to wash his disciples’ feet.

This is probably one of the most beautiful expressions of love in the history of mankind. Jesus, the King of Kings, humbled himself to the role of a servant. I am reminded of Philippians 2:6 which says “Who(Jesus), being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.” This just blows my mind. If anyone is excellent and worthy of praise it is Jesus (duh)!

So why on earth did he make himself a servant?

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (13:34)

Galatians 5:13 tells us to “serve one another in love.” It is pretty easy to love the people who love us. But the people who hurt us? The people who betray us? Not so much. This is what stood out to me the most. Jesus KNEW that Judas Iscariot was going to betray him that very night, and yet he still lowered himself and performed this act of selfless service. Just being honest-- this is tough! My selfish nature makes me want to meet my own needs and desires before I consider the needs of other people, especially the people who are not showing love to me! I want to push my way to the front of the line and I want to honk my horn when I get cut off in traffic, but this is not how things are supposed to be. Jesus showed us how to treat each other- with love and kindness. Just think what the world would look like if there were more servants. Consider the impact that would be made if we stopped putting ourselves first and tried to help the people around us.

So my prayer for the day/week/month/year… (because I have a feeling it will take that long) … God teach me to be a servant like Jesus.


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