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Wednesday, November 30

The Mister made this yummy recipe from food 52 yesterday, I just had to share with y'all. It makes great lunch leftovers, too.

Serves 4
  • 2 cups Rice (basmati my preferred choice)
  • 2 Chicken Breast (medium size)
  • 1 Clove Garlic (finely sliced)
  • Chicken Stock
  • 4 tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Sesame Oil
  • 3 tablespoons Brown Sugar
  • 4 Spring Onions (finely sliced)
  1. To start wash the rice in a sieve so that the water runs clear, removing all starch, brown rice is easy to do this with, however white rice will take longer. This prevents your rice from being stodgy.
  2. Put washed rice in a pan and cover 1cm over the surface with cold water. Add a small amount of chicken stock to flavor. Cover and put on a low heat and leave for around 20 minutes, until the rice has absorbed all the water. It is important not to move the rice in any way, this also prevents it from going stodgy. Once cooked take off the heat. you can fluff it up with a fork.
  3. Whilst the rice is cooking, fry the chicken breast off in a frying pan. If it is non-stick I would use little oil, if not, add some oil to crisp the skin. Once cooked on both sides until golden, leave to cool and shred. (Cooking time can be increased by slicing the chicken thinly before frying)
  4. In a frying pan or wok (preferably wok) add the oil, soy sauce and sugar, cook over a medium heat. Fry off the garlic then add the rice and the chicken. Mix together well and add the spring onions at the last minute to give a little crunch. Season to taste, I would only add pepper as the soy and stock are quite salty.
  5. Serve

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I saw this fun Christmas survey on Living a Goddess Life the other day, but I think that I Rock So What created it. Either way, I wanted to play along.
image via weheartit
1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate?
Hot Chocolate

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree?
He wraps all the small ones, but sometimes there was the random big one that wasn't practical to wrap. My bicycle as a kid, for example.

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white?
We put white lights on the tree outside, but my inside tree is colored lights.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? 
No, but I should. Any excuse to get more kisses from the Mister.
5. When do you put your decorations up?
I start Thanksgiving weekend continue through the following week.

6. What is your favorite holiday dish?
Oh, I love green bean casserole, mashed potatoes and stuffing.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child? 
When we were really young, our extended family drew names for gifts. It was fun to see who you got each year, and who pulled your name.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?

Probably around 9 or 10 years old. I don't remember exactly. Because I have siblings that a quite a bit younger than me, we had to keep the game up for years.

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?
The Mister and I usually exchange gifts on Christmas Eve (if I can wait that long), and we do Christmas with his Mom's side of the family then too.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree?
My tree is just a little 3-foot table top tree. I put colored lights on it, and as many ornaments as I can fit.

11. Snow! Love it or dread it? 
Ugh. I'm not a fan. As far as I'm concerned, Christmas is the only time it's appropriate for it to snow.

12. Can you ice skate?
I love ice skating, but I haven't done it in years.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift?
Yes. Either the first or second year that the Mister and I were dating, he got me a red leather Fossil bag that I had been lusting after for months. We had already exchanged all our gifts and visited the family. That evening, he set it out on the bed so I'd see it right before I went to bed for the evening. I still love that purse.

14. What’s the most important thing about the Holidays for you?

I'm a Christian, so celebrating the birth of Jesus. But spending time with family comes in a pretty close second.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert?
Cappuccino flats. It's a coffee-flavored cookie, dipped in chocolate. They're pretty time-intensive to make, so I don't bake them every year.

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?
I don't know that it's a tradition exactly since we didn't do it last year, but I love baking Christmas cookies while listening to carols (and drinking red wine with the Mister while baking). Also, I buy my niece a Hallmark series ornament each year.

17. What tops your tree?
On the tree inside, we have a metal star with twinkle lights inside. The outside tree should have a red bow if I get around to making one.

18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving?

I really like to give...I enjoy the shopping and love wrapping.

19. Candy Canes: Yuck or Yum? 
 Maybe one, yum. After that, they're too sweet, and I don't really eat hard candy anymore.

20. Favorite Christmas show?
A Charlie Brown Christmas

21. Saddest Christmas Song?
"Pretty Paper" by Willie Nelson. Can you imagine having no where to go on Christmas?

22. What is your favorite Christmas song?
"Carol of the Bells." My favorite version is the choir singing it in Home Alone.

I like the idea of this meme having 25 questions, since Christmas on the 25th, I'm adding three more questions:

23. Favorite Christmas movie?
Home Alone. Kevin still cracks me up after all these years.

24. Do you cook Christmas dinner or do you go to visit family/friends?
We still visit (my parents, his mom's and his grandmother's). It's a lot of driving, andI think when there are babies, we'll insist on staying home. Santa should come down our chimney, don't you think?

25. Favorite holiday picture book?
Probably The Polar Express, but I like The Grinch Who Stole Christmas a lot as well.

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Tuesday, November 29

Good morning, lovelies!
It's Tuesday, so it's time to link up with Miss Angie and list the things that are making us HAPPY this week.
BTW, getting a kitten to stay still long enough to take a photo is a challenge.
1. You all met my new kitten, Muggles, yesterday. How could she not make me HAPPY? She's so sweet. She's also a stray, so tomorrow, we're headed to the vet to get her her shots and flea meds.I love that when I open the front door and go outside, she comes flying out of whereever she is in the yard to come get some love (and food).

2. I'm HAPPY that I can officially start decorating for the holidays now that the Thanksgiving weekend is over. We already have our tree lit outside, now I need to drag the rest of the ornaments down and start with the house.

3. Last night, my business partner and I sat down to review the November numbers. It makes me really HAPPY to see the fruits of hardwork pay off . I'm really looking forward to see how my first year as a business owner turns out on paper.

image via weheartit

4. A little late, but the red cups are back at Starbucks. Peppermint mocha make me HAPPY. I'm making it a goal this week to find the peppermint mocha ice cream.

5. New music makes me HAPPY. I've been listening to Taylor Swift's cd Speak Now quite bit over the last week. I love this song; it's so catchy:

Want to play along? Click the button at the top of the post to link your Happy List up with Miss Angie.

P.S. I'm also HAPPY that I've got a fun giveaway scheduled for Thursday. A giveaway is the perfect start to December. Be sure to check back.
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Monday, November 28

Her name is Muggles.
She's very cute.
And she loves me. =)

This is what happens when I can't do the Black Friday shopping. I bring stray animals home.
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Friday, November 25

Because confession is good for the soul.
I confess...

I'm writing this post from the Mister's office where I'm getting ready to eat my third Thanksgiving meal of the holiday weekend. I really love this holiday, but my waistline does not.

I confess...

This is the second year that the Mister has let me know on Thanksgiving Day that he needs to bring a dish to work the next day. When the grocery stores are closed. What is up with that?

He's lucky that his mom was able to whip up a casserole at the last minute and that I had brownie mix in the cabinet. Pumpkin swirl brownies make me smile.

I confess...

I did not do any Black Friday shopping today. It wasn't by choice. Someone hijacked my credit card number, and I'm waiting on a new one in the mail. Actually, this really helps keep the budget in line. But I'm not going to say that I wasn't tempted to go out anyway when my MIL said they were headed to Kohl's at midnight. Just for fun.

And since my card has been canceled, I swear I've seen more things online that I want to buy, but can't. It's just not right. I probably wouldn't even be looking online if I didn't know I can't shop. *sigh* Why do we always want what we can't have.

I confess...

I'm going up in the attic this evening to pull the Christmas decorations down. Thanksgiving is over, now I can enjoy carols and tinsel and lights to my heart's delight. Who else is decorating for Christmas this weekend? Who had their decorations up before Thanksgiving?

What to join the party? Click the button at the top of the post to link up.
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Thursday, November 24

Today isn't just a holiday, it's also my sweet sister-in-love Mireya's birthday. I wanted to take a moment to wish this pretty lady a happy, happy birthday.
photo by Jenny Jimenez
I hope you get to have birthday cake and pumpkin pie (and ice cream).

Leave her some birthday love on her blog, pearls & such!

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I hope that all my lovely blog friends have a safe and happy Thanksgiving with family and friends. And let us remember to particularly kind to the people who are working today.

This year, I am particularly thankful for
1. God, my church and my Bible study class
2. My husband and our marriage, even when times are challenging
3. Family and friends
4. A successful company and opportunities
5. A roof over our heads, good food for our bellies and sweet, loving pups.

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Tuesday, November 22

I've been out of the bloggy world lately, so I was surprised to log in today and find out Mamarazzi is going on a bloggy break. I'm going to miss her =( However, I love Miss Angie, and she's going to be hosting the Happy List linky party until Mamarazzi gets back.

I feel like I owe everyone an explanation and an apology for not posting in so long. Nothing terrible has happened; I've just been incredibly busy. I mentioned earlier this summer that I'm buying my company (the previous owner is retiring), and being the boss has taken up a lot of my time lately.

I'm still trying to find the balance between work, fun and blogland. Please hang in there with me; I'm hoping to be back on more regular basis than the last 8 week have been.

Okay, let's move on to the HAPPY!


1. This week I'm so HAPPY to have a husband who is so understanding of my crazy schedule. The Mister has been so awesome with getting dinner started, helping with chores and making sure our sweet pups get plenty of love and walks.
In addition to making me coffee every morning,  he's been super-sweet about surprising me with the occasional six pack or bottle of wine when I've had a particularly hard day. We've always shared the household chores, but lately, he's gone above and beyond as the office hours have gotten particularly demanding.

2. In light of the crazy hours, I'm HAPPY that this is a holiday week. I definitely have work to do over the weekend, but I'm trying to set myself up to work from home for the weekend. It will be nice to sleep in a few extra days this week and spend some time with my family. And let's face it, Thanksgiving dinner is awesome.

3. I made a cheesecake from scratch this month for the first time, and it turned out awesome. I'm so HAPPY because in the past when I've attempted this, I've screwed up the crust. Luckily, my step-mom shared a really easy, delicious recipe with me. Look for a post sharing the the yummy-ness soon.
4. South Carolina "winter" makes me HAPPY. Thanksgiving is in two days, and it's in the 70s outside. We have the windows open. It doesn't get any better than that.

5. I'm HAPPY to be watching the Carolina/Clemson game this weekend with some friends. It's been a good season for both teams, and this should be an exciting game.

Do you want to play along with the Happy List? Click the button above to link up with Mamarazzi.

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Monday, November 14

And a reminder to be kind to myself in addition to everyone around me.
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