Which One?

James and I made a quick trip down to Auburn to pick out puppy Osborn. We had to pick our favorite two, just in case the couple that gets to pick in front of us happens to pick one of the ones we liked. They were all adorable! They are all a little older than a month old, and just starting to roam and play. We narrowed it down to these two, both chocolate males. Both had layed back demeanors (well at least right now, I am sure that will change). We still aren't sure on the name, kinda depends on which we get. The smaller of the two was the most relaxed...definitely an Amos. The slightly larger one might have a different name...Gunner, Levi, Moss, Perry, to name a few being tossed around. What's your vote?


Some of my favorites...

Just wanted to share some things that I have been enjoying lately (in no particular order)...

1. My new scheduler that my sis gave me for my birthday. If you are in the search for a great day planner, look no further-

You can find it at Amazon, comes in about five colors. Mine is Mochachinno...love it and the name!
2. The good ole' Crock-Pot. This device has made my husband very happy lately. He gave me a cookbook for my birthday....

We received a crockpot for a wedding present, and it sure has come in handy. This week I made Sloppy Joe's. I know, I know, Sloppy Joes??? I was skeptical at first, but they were delicious. Ex. I called James on the way home from work yesterday, "We are going to have leftovers tonight, ok?" response,"Good! I have been looking forward to it all day!" SUCCESS
3. A new top my friend Molly gave me for my birthday....from Banana Republic, very trendy fun!

4. The One Year Devotional for Couples, I really enjoy this time in the mornings with James before work. We eat cereal, read, and pray together. The daily readings are not that long, but share inspirational stories centered around Christ and His love for us.

5. Hummus... Yum...I have tried to make it, but actually did not like it as much as the store-bought stuff. Add a side of pita chips or carrots = perfect snack.

6. Top Chef, the one show James and I both LOVE to watch.

My picks to win are Kevin and Jen...you heard it here first...

In other news, Dog Osborn will be picked out this weekend. We don't actually get him for a few more weeks, but we are going to pick which pup will be ours. Now for a name...


Welcome to the Ridge...

My parents are building a house in Perry County in Central Alabama. It is pretty much in the middle of nowhere, which is one of the main reasons it is so wonderful. My mom was raised in Perry County in a small community called Marion Junction. The new house is about five miles northwest of there (25 minutes from Selma, where I grew up). When I saw the view from "The Ridge" (what my family calls the new house) for the first time, it brought tears to my eyes. The view is gorgeous, and it is such a testimony of God's magnificent creation.

View from the porch...Can't you just imagine sitting in a rocking chair, sipping lemonade in total relaxation?!

View from one of the upstairs bedroom...

These pictures are several months old so the house is further along than this. They should get to move in in the next 2-3 months. I will post some "after"pics then...


Wish I was here...

Do you ever wish you could blink your eyes and be back somewhere that you love with the one you love? Here is where I would go...


Birthday Weeks are the Best...

In my family, it is a long standing joke that we like to enjoy birthday months, a birthday week, basically any prolonging of our birthday celebrations. My fabulous new husband has embraced this tradition. In fact, he really has excelled with it. My birthday is Sunday, but he stared last Sunday giving me cards and little happies. One day I walked in to find this lovely arrangement in my kitchen window....

Then yesterday, when I arrived home from work there is a box on the table with "Happy Early Birthday!" Enclosed are these items...

OH YES, YOU GUESSED RIGHT, WE ARE GETTING A DOG!! James and I have been talking about it for a little while, but I really didn't think it was going to happen. Then surprise, we are on the list for a chocolate lab from a kennel in Auburn. The puppies are only 3 weeks old, and we do not get to pick ours for another 2 weeks. We do know we are getting a chocolate lab male. We will take him home around 8 weeks, so mid-October!! No pictures of the puppies yet, but here is a picture of our puppies father, Tucker...

Isn't he beautiful! I can't wait to meet the next member of the Osborn family.
Now for names and dog proofing the house...


Labor Day Weekend..

This past weekend the husband and I headed to the loveliest village on the plains for Auburn's first game. We enjoyed a beautiful run around campus (which has changed significantly since I graduated) Saturday morning, followed by a yummy breakfast at Bizilia's Cafe. I have to admit I stalked the new Alpha Gam dorm until someone came out so I could go in and check it out. It is awesome! So beautiful, and spacious. Each girl has an individual room with a shared common room for the four in the suite. There are also two bathrooms per suite (like a Jack n Jill). Not like ole Dixie Bibb Graves Hall. I loved the tour, and James didn't roll his eyes too much :) Sorry no pictures, because even I know that would have been Over the Top!
The rest of the day consisted of tailgating with James's family, tiger walk, and of course the game. It is days like this that makes you proud to be an Auburn tiger! (I know my father would love that comment) I did not have my camera, but took some pictures on the phone, so I apologize for the poor quality.

Coach Chizik was FIRED up! Almost as much as James...

This is me hot, sweaty, and not quite as fired up about tigerwalk...

At the game, we both look a little sweaty and tired, but happy....

Monday, Molly and I went to visit Allison and Brad Murfee, and their newest addition Sarah Kate Murfee. She is adorable!! It was great to meet her, and visit with her parents.


Another Chicken Hit...

I have never made Chicken Marsala, but always enjoyed it at restaurants so I thought I would give it a try. It was slightly more technical than I thought, but worth it! James and I both went back for seconds.

Chicken Marsala (recipe courtesy of myrecipe.com)

4 tablespoons butter, divided
Cooking spray
1 (8-ounce) package presliced mushrooms
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/4 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon black pepper, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3/4 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup dry Marsala wine
1/2 cup frozen green peas
2 tablespoons half-and-half
4 cups hot cooked fettuccine (about 8 ounces uncooked pasta)

Place 3 tablespoons butter in a small glass measuring cup. Microwave butter at MEDIUM-HIGH 45 seconds or until melted. Let stand 1 minute. Skim foam from surface, and discard. (Mixture will appear separated.) Set the clarified butter aside. (My note: This ensures it will not burn when cooking the chicken.)

Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat; add mushrooms, shallots, and garlic. Cook 3 minutes or until moisture evaporates; remove mushroom mixture from pan. Set aside.

Place each chicken breast half between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; pound to a 1/4-inch thickness using a meat mallet or rolling pin. Sprinkle both sides of chicken with 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Place flour in a shallow dish; dredge chicken breast halves in flour.

Add clarified butter to pan, and place over medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 3 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Remove chicken from pan. Return mushroom mixture to pan; add broth and Marsala, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes or until reduced to 1 cup. Stir in peas; cook 1 minute. Add 1 tablespoon butter, half-and-half, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper, stirring until butter melts. Return chicken to pan; cook until thoroughly heated. Serve chicken and sauce over pasta.

***A few changes/adjustments I made to make it easier (and better). I used canned early peas (not sweet peas) which I thought cooked better than the frozen kind. I used fresh mushrooms which I thought really added to the flavor. I bought the pre-thinned chicken breast at the grocery (was actually cheaper) and cut out that step.

As Julia would say "Bon Appetit!"