Thursday, April 28, 2011


i've had some suggestions to post more about my dog, quinn. i thought that was a great idea! so i interviewed him.

quinn is a 17-month old male great dane. he weighs about 110 pounds and when standing, his head comes up to my belly button. if he could stand on his hind legs, he would be about 5 or 6 inches taller than me, so almost 6 feet tall. he is a sweetheart and we love him very much.

hope you enjoy his interview:
bailey: so, quinn. where is your favorite place to sleep?
quinn: i like cuddling up in small spaces. right now, the corner where the two couches meet is my fave. but when mom and dad let me on the bed with them, that takes the cake. i do not like laying down on hard, cold floors, and if i have to, i will bring my blanket from my bed so i don't have to endure the horrible floor.

bailey: what is your biggest fear?
quinn: water. the kind that sprays you is the worst. or the kind that is really big and deep. or the kind that is cold. or the kind that is wet. i don't mind baths as much, but that's because i get a massage at the same time.

bailey: what is your favorite people food?
quinn: i really like it when mom and dad give me anything because that means they love me, but my favorite lately is when they give me the last bit of peanut butter in the container. also, my mom gives me the brown pieces of avocado, and that is good too. oh, and ice. yum.

bailey: what is your favorite season?
quinn: i like fall or spring, because that's when mom and dad like going outside the most. i don't like summer because it's too hot and mom is away a lot working at camp.

bailey: which toy is your favorite?
quinn: i like my long rope toys that i can swing around and throw in the air. they are good for tug-o-war too. oh, and i like the tear the strings off of them until they are dead and then i eat them and the strings come out in my poop and my poop is colorful! it's wonderful. rope toys have been my fave since i was a puppy:

bailey: what is something you like to chase?
quinn: i love to chase the little bright red dot on the ground. it's so sneaky and fast and only comes out at night and when mom or dad are holding a shiny thing in their hands. when i see them with the shiny thing, i get in my at-the-ready position, so i can catch the red dot better. they laugh at me when i chase it, and that makes me happy because i like to make mom and dad happy.

bailey: what do you get in trouble most for?
quinn: when i shake my body, i get in trouble. mom and dad say i shake too hard and that's what makes the tips of my ears bleed. then i have to wear band-aids and a cone and those aren't fun.

bailey: where is your favorite place to visit?
quinn: gramps and granny's place (mom's mom and dad). they have a nice backyard where i learned how to dig. they have small dogs, too, that i can play with. also, gramps and granny don't get me in trouble as much as mom and dad do.

bailey: what is the command you are best at?
quinn: i like it when people tell me to "shake" because then i get to touch them and be near them.

bailey: what is your least favorite command?
quinn: when people tell me to "lay down." usually, when i'm standing or sitting, it's for a reason and i don't want to lay down! what if the ground is too cold? or too hot? or hard? or what if i can smell your food better when i'm standing? but i'll do it anyway, just slowly.

bailey: what makes you bark the most?
quinn: when i hear people talking outside our door or window. mom and dad don't like when i bark too much, but i do it for their own protection!

bailey: what's your favorite way to get your energy out?
quinn: i like to go to the dog park to run around & play with other dogs. also, chasing that little red dot gets me tired, too. sometimes, mom or dad will rollerblade with me while i trot beside them. when mom & dad walk or jog and take me with them, though, it doesn't get much of my energy out.

bailey: what makes you frustrated?
quinn: when mom or dad make me stop barking. then, i just huff and puff while i pace around the apartment because i get anxious. i don't like not being able to scare predators away! also, if mom and dad do weird things to me, like put clothes on me, i get a little frustrated, but not in the same way, just a little annoyed.

bailey: what is the worst thing that's ever happened to you?
quinn: well, every week, mom has to squirt liquid stuff in my ear and clean it out. i hate that. i get all dizzy afterward and can't stand up straight for a long time. it's traumatizing.

bailey: who are your best dog friends?
quinn: ruca, my aunt carley's dog, and henry, my uncle matt and aunt jana's dog are my cousins and best friends. they are both big enough to play the way i like to play.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011


in january, mark and i went on a last minute ski trip to santa fe, new mexico with our friends, brent and shadia.

we spent most of our time skiing at ski santa fe which is located about 20 minutes outside of the city, in the santa fe national forest. the skiing was pretty good, especially for the prices. and it was so beautiful! after a few days of skiing, we had about a half of a day to roam around the city before we drove back to texas.

if there was one thing i could change about our trip, it would have been to have more time to explore the city. every building there is made of adobe, which was totally weird, but neat at the same time. and very picturesque. santa fe (the capital of new mexico) is full of unique and local restaurants, shops, antique shops, museums, and has a large arts district.

we stayed at a super cheap hotel, the lamplighter inn, which had kitchenettes in the rooms (including an oven and a stove). this helped us not have to spend so much money eating out; after skiing, we would come back to the inn to cook and relax. the only place we ate at was called the cafe ole, a coffee shop that also had sandwiches, soups, salads, tacos, brunch, and more. it was very good.

 of course i had to include one of mark falling (hehe):
and here's the gang -- brent, shadia, me, and mark:

a few from downtown santa fe:

[All photos were taken in January 2011.]

Monday, April 25, 2011


mark and i have been trying to figure out fun ways to eat more raw veggies. when you love cooked veggies, it's just so hard to eat raw veggies. but not with fun recipes! also, because of his health conditions, mark needs to be eating more cabbage, and he loves this recipe. how grand!
in texas, summer is quickly approaching. to most all other states, it would have seemed to have already been here a month ago! in houston, the temp has gotten up to 92 degrees for the past week. because of the looming heat, warm meals have been replaced with more cold, refreshing dishes. this slaw, to me, is one of those dishes!
summer slaw
1/2 head purple cabbage, shredded
4 or 5 carrots, shredded
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
3 tbsp lime juice
3 tbsp honey (use maple syrup or agave nectar for vegan)
1/4 tsp sea salt
1. place cabbage, carrots, cilantro, jalepeno, and ginger in large bowl. toss to combine.
2. toss mixture with olive oil, lime juice, honey, and salt. combine well.
3. feel free to play around with the recipe to your liking and serve.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


happy hump day! in reality though, we're on the other side of the hump because of the easter weekend. hooray for that. what are your plans for easter? i get to watch my nieces and nephew hunt for easter eggs. so excited!

i have a photo for you of some people that i love dearly. this was taken 3.5 years ago, when i bought my dad tickets to go skydiving for his birthday. since i had gone skydiving before, i wanted my little sister to go with him.

i love these faces. this photo was taken seconds after landing back on the ground and minutes after jumping out of a plane! do you see my sister's face?! she couldn't believe what she just did. (and look at her hair! you can tell she just fell thousands of feet.) i love my dad's face. this is his "yeah i just did that" face. so content. his hair is great, too. they were so joyful afterward. it was awesome to see.

Monday, April 18, 2011


i'm so excited to share this recipe. i love peanut butter. even though peanut butter is something i should give up because of health reasons, i just can't. it is my indulgence. i think being gluten-free, dairy-free, and sugar-free (among others) is enough, don't you think?
i'm not a good breakfast eater. i get grossed out by things like eggs or butter or cheese in the morning. even fruits are sometimes too much. it's weird, i know. i think all that's over and done with now, thanks to this smoothie! i was craving something sweet and peanut buttery late one night last week, and i came up with this. after i perfected it, i knew it could be something i could have for breakfast. yay!
it is also totally good for you (unless you can't do peanut butter or cocoa). it is high in protein, AND sugar-free. (and dairy-free, if that's how you choose to make it.)
peanut butter chocolate smoothie
1 1/2 to 2 cups of ice
1 tbsp cocoa powder
2 tbsp coconut flour
2 tbsp vanilla-flavored protein powder (rice or whey)
3 tbsp organic peanut butter
1 tbsp honey (use maple syrup or agave nectar for vegan)
1 cup milk of your choice (rice, almond, coconut, etc)
1. place ingredients in blender in the order they are listed.
2. blend together until pureed, about 1 minute.
3. pour in glass and enjoy! makes one large serving, two small servings.
- add more or less milk depending on how thick you want the smoothie.
- this is a great base recipe, so play around with it. add a banana. take away the cocoa powder. decrease amount of peanut butter. et cetera, et cetera.

Friday, April 15, 2011


i had something like this at a restaurant in DC and i just had to try to recreate it. i'm fairly proud of tastes just about the same.

fennel and apple salad
with sherry dressing
1 bulb fennel, sliced thinly (i used a mandolin slicer; next time i will slice even thinner)
1 granny smith apple, cored & julienned (or sliced into thin, long strips)
4 ounces hard cheese, cut into small cubes (i used manchego, a hard goat cheese that tastes a little like parmesan)
1 tbsp fennel fronds, finely chopped
3 tbsp chopped walnuts (optional; i left them out for myself, but will add for hubby)
for the dressing:
1 1/2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tbsp sherry
1/2 tsp dijon mustard
1/8 tsp sea salt
1. toss sliced fennel, apple, cheese, and walnuts together in large bowl and sprinkle on the chopped fennel fronds.
2. whisk together olive oil, sherry, dijon, and salt in small bowl or container for the sherry dressing.
3. add the sherry dressing to the salad mix, tossing well.
4. garnish with a fennel frond and serve. recipe serves 2.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

this week's honor roll - DIY recycled map crafts

considering the things i've posted before, if you're a regular reader, you might know already that i love maps and globes and travel decor, etc. but, if you didn't know already, i'll tell you: i love maps!!

crafts made from maps are awesome. i will always love them, as well as wall art and other decor made from recycled maps. this week's honor roll is dedicated to recycled maps. i found so many that i might have to do a part II! we'll see. hope you enjoy!

1. map-lined bookshelf via pinterest.
2. map lamp shade via college life diy.
3. map-covered dresser via the mayfly.
4. decoupage map monogram via ohdeedoh.
5. framed map hearts via not on the high street.
6. city map gift bow via how about orange.
7. map-covered bracelet via craft stylish.
8. map-covered door window frame via junk garden girl.
9. shiny map magnets via how about orange.
10. map coasters via martha stewart.
11. map-covered vintage window pane via casa de daisy.
12. and, of course, i had to add my own! half-marble map magnets via me!

Thursday, April 7, 2011


i haven't had time at allll to start editing my DC photos. lemme tell ya, there's a bunch. but i still even have a vacay from january to blog about! sheesh.

anyway, DC was amazing, of course! i'll let you know more in a later post. i thought i'd share with you one of my favorite shots of the trip (and the only one i've edited so far...hehe), proving that spring is definitely upon us with its beauty.

ahh. so pretty.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


happy hump day! only 3 days until i get to see my sisters-in-law kim, jill, and jana, my brothers-in-law matt, jonathan, michael, and andrew, my mother-in-law, my father-in-law, and my new nephew ezekiel! not to mention my best friend, cynthia. some of them i haven't seen in tooo long. i'm excited!

are you excited for the weekend? what's getting you through the week? 

here's a silly photo taken just for you!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


i've been to lotsa cool places. i traveled to many of them before i ever had a blog. and even some when i did have a blog, but i just wasn't a good blogger. oopsie! if you know me at all through my blog (or know me forreal), you know that i love to travel. i also have a lot of hobbies, and therefore my blog isn't specialized at all. (which genre would you put my blog in? hmm...maybe the health/food/travel/craft/photography/spiritual genre? i just wish there was a genre called "hobby collectors" for my poor blog.)

anyway, i would love for my blog to also be a resource...a blog where people can see these cool places i've been, and then go there themselves! that's why i have decided to post photos of my past travels...for you guys! i'll tell you about the trip, what i did, where i stayed, etc, and you can either go "ooh me wanna go..." or "meh, not for me."

this trip was way back in march of 2008, during my last semester in college. i had decided that my last spring break was going to be the best ever, so i devised a little road trip, taking along my best friend, cynthia, and my then boyfriend (now hubby) mark. our first stop was white sands national monument, just outside of alamogordo, new mexico. we stayed a few miles away in cloudcroft, nm in a small hostel nestled in the lincoln national forest called cloudcroft mountain park hostel. this hostel is awesome! the owners were very accommodating and the place was cheap, cute, and comfy. it is also near ski areas and hiking trails.

when we got to white sands, we were just in awe. the place is so vast. and white. and awesomely sandy. really soft sand. fun fact: the white sands missile range is right next door, where the military tests missiles, bombs, aircrafts, and tons of other crazy stuff!

cynthia was impressed:
oh no! looks like cynthia got her foot stuck!

we had fun jumping and sliding down the dunes. of course, mark had to show off every chance he got:
aww...the lovebirds, before they got betrothed:
the pretty sand up close:
the sun beginning to set:
mark and cynthia playing with their shadows:
and drawing in the sand:

and then mark decided to give a demonstration to all the guys out there how to romantically propose to a girl. cynthia really took her acting gig seriously. :)
pretty sunset:
the next morning we came back and spent a few hours sledding down the dunes. it was so much fun! we have videos of it, but i have no idea where they are. this was us after sledding. mark and cynthia didn't match on purpose, i promise. :)

and here's a photo of a trail right outside our hostel that we hiked for a little bit before leaving:

that's it. isn't it an awesome place?! you should totally go! ok bye. more of my travels to come!

[All photos were taken in March 2008.]