Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I talk to the TV

Today marks two and a half years of Taylor

Fake us

Real us

Tater Tot: I thank God for you every single day. I know half anniversaries don't really count but I'm a girl. Plus it's more exciting than just Wednesday. So here's to having no clue where we are going, or what we are doing in life. Thanks for sticking around this long. I promise it's about to get good :)

Enough of that. I just finished off my hidden stash of pretzel M&M's so I'm pretty shook up about it. In more interesting news, here is your bi-monthly Lizard update:

Either Lizard thinks it's real cool to invite friends over to party, or Lizard is a she and is multiplying rapidly. (I don't know anything about Lizard reproduction/gestation...no actually I'm pretty sure they don't gestate.) Yesterday alone there were three lizard sightings in three separate areas of the home. One was outside but it was disturbingly close to the door so I think technically that's still my turf. The spike in lizard sightings means one thing.

Fuzzy Crocs never leave the feet. 
Lizard-1 , Natalie-0

No, I'm not over it.

Lastly, I love you Bachelor Pad. Vienna and Kasey are PSYCHO and it just makes for the best two hours of Monday night television ever. Literally every time Vienna opened her mouth was followed with a "SHUT UP, PINOCCHIO, YOU ARE COMING OFF STUPID." comment from me to the TV. Glad I was home alone. Will someone please sign me up for The Bachelor so I can get sent home after visiting some really fantastic and tropical location and can then be on the next season of Bachelor Pad with all these crazy psycho skanks?!? I have a new dream. Watch out, MLK. And seriously, someone sign me up. I'm super eligible.

Love & Other Indoor Sports,

Nat

Monday, August 15, 2011

Please Make it Stop: A bunch of scary semi-grown-up stuff that's happening right now.

I know I am literally the world's worst blogger. I also know that I over-use the word literally. But here's what's been going on lately.

  • Summer coming to a close. (Which I did NOT okay, but it's almost as if no one cares...)
  • Jacklyn getting hitched (CHECK!)
  • Getting ready for student teaching (HOLY CRAP WHAT I'M SCARED HELP ME NOW!)

So as you can see I've been very busy/fragile recently so maybe it'll make me more forgivable. 

Well Jacklyn is officially married. It was definitely one of the top weekends of the summer (really only topped by my twenty-first birthday at the beginning of the summer and her bachelorette party last weekend, and that's because those are intended to be crazy-never-spoken-about-again-weekends which are automatically the MOST fun). It was honestly such a beautiful weekend and without going overly after-school-speical on you I have to say being a part of it was just an amazing experience. I feel like this wedding was so special to me. I've lived with Jacklyn for the past two and a half years, and she's become one of my dearest friends. I was also lucky enough to be part of the group that was there for her and Matt's engagement (Check out the GORGEOUS tear-jerking video!) Their day flew by, but it was picture perfect! She was a stunning bride! And I don't have a camera so I'm forced to wait for other people to upload their pictures of the weekend, so until then I'll just give you a couple crappys that I snapped on my phone.  

This is not a good picture, but it DOES show
our dresses and the color scheme and
pretty plates and yada yada.


Happy little couple.

Just lovely lovely lovely. 

Next,

So today I had to wake up at 5:30 because Taylor's been house sitting and that's when he woke up for work and I had to leave when he left cause I didn't have a key (whoaaaa long boring run-on sentence). Anyways, we woke up at 5:30 which was so ungodly early and I was rolling in the sheets around crying "Ohh my gosh NOOOO this sucksssss I hate morningssssssss."  You know all dramatic like. And then I was like, "OH-MY-GOD. One week from today I will be awake at this time BY CHOICE because I have to be at the school by SEVEN!" And then I was freaking out more. This is NOT okay! Here are my real feelings about this: 

I am excited* to start student teaching. However, along with excited* come words such as anxious, terrified, panicked and nervous-wreck. Just to name a few. I met with my cooperating teacher last week, and she's absolutely awesome. Meeting with her definitely calmed me down a little bit. After ten years of teaching first grade, this is her first time teaching fourth, so even though I'll be wayyy out of my comfort zone with big kids, it's nice to know that we'll both be dealing with a lot of new experiences together. And I love kids and I am ready to be back in the classroom setting for sure. But still, I am a girl of many freak-outs. In all honestly, I am nothing short of terrified, slightly traumatized, and I no longer judge people for self-medicating to treat panic attacks cause I'm like 96% sure I've had about fifteen in the past three hours and it's time to get this mess UNDER CONTROL. If there are any readers out there who have been in my shoes before and have any comforting words of wisdom, help please, my sanity is at stake.

The only thing that is keeping me from falling apart right now and maintaining a sense of normalcy is the fact that it's MONDAY which means BACHELOR PAD!!!!!!! Two drama-filled hours. Love it. Also I've been thinking really really vivid thoughts about Chick-fil-a for like a week and a half so I will more than likely treat myself for dinner.

So there you have it. The super grown-up things that have been scaring the mess out of me. (Well, there's nothing grown-up about Bachelor Pad and Chick-fil-a but thats okay.) I have six days left before the real word rudely comes to call, so buy me a drink and drop an encouraging line before I LOSE IT and this becomes my face PERMANENTLY.

Slowly losing my mind. With Style.
No really, I'M FINE!

*Love and Other Indoor Sports,

Nat

*P.S. If you can tell me what Judy Blume book that is from I will name you my soulmate and it will be so impressive. I love Judy Blume.




Wednesday, August 3, 2011

This is not interesting.

For the five of you who read this, sorry I'm so boring. Oh well.

So today I went to Half-Price Books. Let's just talk about how going into Half-Price Books you will almost certainly encounter some of the weirdest people EVER. Like seriously if you're looking for oddballs head right on over. So naturally this is where I choose to hang out on a hot summers afternoon. You know, to be with my kind. It's like returning to the mothership really. Anyways, while perusing the disorganized shelves of Half-Price Books, I had this mini-life-epiphany. (Cause I'm really smart and these things just come to me sometimes.) Here 'tis:

HELLO. Why can't you judge a book by its cover? Think about it. That cliche makes NO SENSE. Are books not meant to be judged by their covers??! No, I'm not stupid, seriously, just sit back and think about it. I mean, hello! First impression?? If you can't judge a book by its cover then what the hell can you judge it by?!!!???!?!! Alright, let's start from square one. When you're walking around Barnes and Noble (or Half-Price Books, if you have my budget) the thing that makes you pick up the book in the first place is how really fantastically attractive the cover is. So, in combat, I move that we switch the cliche to "Don't judge a book by its title." Cause that's harder. Titles are way harder than covers. It took me like six hours to come up with my blog title and it's still lame with a side of lame sauce. So there.

{Actually now that I think about it maybe I take that whole rant back. Because what if you have a book with a lazy author who doesn't care about having a badass title or cover but they are so brilliant and so the book is really awesome but you NEVER know because it had a hideous cover and a really non-alluring (word?) title.  But it's still awesome. So now I'm second guessing myself. Dang. I'm confused.}

This is why I am a terrible blogger.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Yum: Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

I woke up this morning and thought, "Well, I think I'll bake something today." I do that a lot. I spent the entire last semester of school baking nearly every day. I'm not kidding. I mean cookies, cakes, pies, muffins. You name it, I was baking it. I swear my roommates hated me, but my boyfriend loved me. This summer I've been so busy, plus it's been like ungodly hot and, really, who wants to be in the kitchen then? Not I.

But today was just an exception. I walked into the kitchen and there were two ripe bananas sitting on the counter and I just thought, "Alright, chocolate chip banana bread it is." And I am so excited. This is the first recipe I've come up with all on my own! No, seriously, this is a big moment. Yes I looked at a million recipes first, but there wasn't one that I just loved so I tweaked and pulled bits and pieces of others to make this all my own. And I feel like a champ. I tasted quite a bit along the way and the batter was absolutely scrumptious. Seriously it's amazing. And the smell while it was baking. Oh my gosh absolutely decadent. I feel like a goddess.It turned out wonderfully chocolatey, which I love. But if you wanted to tone down on the chocolate, just decrease the chocolate chips at your own discretion. I baked this today around one, and the thing is already down to one piece left. (And I only had a piece and a half! Swear!) This was a huge hit! I wholeheartedly suggest serving it with a big glass of ice cold milk. Trust me.

So here it is! My first totally mostly original...
Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Recipe:


Ingredients
1 1/2 Cups Flour
1 Cup Sugar
1 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Tsp Ground Cinnamon (makes a HUGE difference!)
2 Large Ripe Bananas (mashed)
2 Eggs (lightly beaten)
1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil
1/4 Tsp Vanilla Extract
1 Cup Semi-sweet Chocolate Chips
1 Tbsp Chocolate Chips & Pinch of Powdered Sugar (to drizzle and top!)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan and set aside.

Start by mixing together all the dry ingredients. Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and cinnamon together in a medium sized mixing bowl.

In a large mixing bowl mash together 2 large ripe bananas (leaving them a little chunky to add that thick banana bread texture to the loaf.)



Top the mashed bananas with vanilla extract, then add vegetable oil and eggs. Slowly stir in your dry ingredients  until just combined. Be careful not to over-mix! Then stir in chocolate chips.



Pour the batter into greased loaf pan. The only difficulty was, concocting this thing on my own I wasn't exactly sure how long to bake it. Most banana breads cook anywhere from 50-75 minutes, so it was tough. I wanted mine to be super moist, but not mushy and undercooked. So I watched it like a hawk, and I think my exact cooking time was like 56 minutes. (You can always use a toothpick to test the consistency.)

Allow the bread to cool in the loaf pan for about ten minutes after removing it from the oven before transferring it onto a serving dish.



Once mine had cooled off a little I decided to decorate it a little bit. I melted a heaping tablespoon of chocolate chips in a ziplock bag in the microwave. I snipped the edge off the bag and drizzled a little on top of the loaf to make it extra chocolatey. (I'm definitely no artist so there's better chocolatey drizzle creative potential here than I managed to tap into!)



I finished by sprinkling a pinch of powdered sugar over the chocolate drizzle. And here you have the end product!




Enjoy!

Nat

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tuesday's Top Ten: Songs I Can't Get Out of My Head

What? It's not Tuesday anymore?? Oh well. Is it my fault that by the time I get around to thinking about Tuesday it's already passed? I think not. Also P.S. I make no promises to be entertaining cause I'm freakin' worn out today so just deal.



I'm not one of those people who can say "Music is my life blah-dy blah-dy." Yes, I listen to music everytime I'm in the car, and sometimes when I'm on the computer. But if we're being honest, when I'm hanging around the house, or getting ready in the morning, I'm ten times more likely to pop in season 7 of my Friends DVD collection that power up old Itunes. I mean, I do love music, but it's certainly not my life. I've got decent taste, but this week's Top Ten list is certainly not meant to wow you with my stunning musical selection skills.  This week I have just been getting so into some of my old favorites, and have been introduced to some awesome new ones. So I thought I'd share. (P.S. I've taken it upon myself to make every song title a link to a YouTube video for your listening/viewing pleasure. You can thank me later, in the form of chocolates and flowers and twenty dollar bills.)

{TOP TEN SONGS I CAN'T GET OUT OF MY HEAD}

1. Here's to You by Brooke Fraser
  • I literally feel like this song is my life anthem right now. Allison just gave me a CD with a bunch of random crap on it and this just speaks to me. 
2. Barefoot Blue Jean Night by Jake Owen
  • Thanks soul-sister for bringing this into my life. This song literally makes me want to be twenty-one and carefree for the rest of my life. Seriously, I wish. If it's possible for a song to make you never wanna grow up this is the one to do it. (But sidenote: if you don't like country then you're S.O.L. and it may not do the trick.) Also his voice is way sexy and it makes me wanna smooch him. 
3. Son's Gonna Rise by Citizen Cope
  • I know this song is so high school and so One Tree Hill era but it's still straight awesomeness. 
4. Oklahoma Breakdown by Stoney LaRue
  • This song makes me all warm and fuzzy inside, because the first time I ever heard it was the summer of 2009. I'd just finished up my first semester at Howard Payne and Taylor and I went on a road trip to Florida with our awesome friend Brian and his girlfriend. One night after we'd been wandering around on the beach we all somehow ended up in this cute park in Pensacola with an adorable gazebo and spent the rest of the night trying to teach yours truly how to two-step. This song played on repeat about a dozen times. I'm still a terrible dancer, but this song just takes me back to that amazing week on the beach. 

5. MakeDamnSure by Taking Back Sunday
  • No, I lied. This is so high school. And I love it. If you didn't love Taking Back Sunday then you definitely weren't cool. And probably still aren't. Just sayin'. Also, I feel like a rockstar when this comes on. 

6. Hotel California by The Eagles
  • I swear to you this song has been on the radio every time I get in the car and I love it. My mom did a really bad-ass job of ensuring that music from the eighties really stuck with me. She was always obsessed with Don Henley (Uhh, hello Dirty Laundry anyone??!) I remember one time we went to the store and came home with a video recording of the entire Hell Freezes Over reunion concert. I cannot count the times that I sat on our grungy brown carpet singing Tequila Sunrise  and just thinking it had to be the best thing I'd ever heard. Turns out, I was right. Still. Cool. "For the record. We never broke up, we just took a fourteen year vacation." Classic.
7. Born for This by Paramore
  • Have you ever heard a song that just made you go "WHOA." Well I never really quite got over Paramore. This CD never leaves my car and will never get old. I'm like 96% sure this is the song that was on the radio when I got in my wreck in December. That wasn't really relevant but yes I shared anyways because I go above and beyond. 
8. You Make My Dreams by Hall & Oates
  • Hahahahaha, you know this song is totally gonna be stuck in your head all week. You're welcome
9. She's Like Texas by Josh Abbott Band
  • I've never met anyone who doesn't like this song. If you don't then don't bother introducing yourself to  me. It makes everything about being from Texas seem really special and awesome, which is half fantasy/half reality. 
10. Love is Free by Sheryl Crow
  • Whatever. If you say you don't like Sheryl Crow we will all know you're lying so don't even bother. She's awesome and so is this song. 

I'm realizing more and more as this whole blogging thing progresses that I seem to be more of a Tuesday/Wednesday blogger. My bad. Perhaps this week I will venture out into the unknown of Thursday. Hmm...we'll see.

Hugs,

Nat

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Wednesday Wishlist

(I'm still not over the lizard thing, if you're wondering. I slept with one eye open.)

{ONE}

I want Brad Paisley and Blake Shelton tickets. If you didn't know this then you're really not paying attention. 



{TWO}

I've found all these amazing ice cream recipes lately. Last week I found a great looking caramelized banana ice cream recipe. And so now all I need is a badass ice cream maker to make all my frozen treat dreams come true. 



{THREE} 

I've been so lazy lately. I used to run all the time. Like two miles everyday. (That's not alot I know, but it's alot for me.) But lately I've just been so lazy. I don't know if it's because it's so ungodly hott, or because I'm just a bum, but I haven't been near as dedicated. So, now, I've decided my new thing is going to be bike riding. For one, I hear it's a killer workout, and for two, look how cute! 
(Side note: I realize that this bike is not the intense workout kinda bike. I am not stupid. I was never serious about getting a workout. Get real.)

Also, if I had this bike I could carry flowers in the basket and ride around like
a hippie handing them out to strangers. Or I could carry some other
types of fabulous goodies and keep them to myself instead of give them
away. Really a bike leaves you with a lot of different options.


{FOUR}

I haven't cooked in awhile and I'm feenin' for it real bad. I promise I am making this Friday night for din. How delicous. Grilled salmon with mango avocado salsa, can you say YUM?



{FIVE}

A marg. Because I can just tell it's gonna be one of those weeks. Luckily, I'm meeting up with my soul sister tonight after work to satisfy this craving :)



Hugs & Happy Wednesday,

Nat

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

I hate nature.

**Okay I don't really hate nature, but I wouldn't say I'm its number one fan. The following story is one of many reasons why I should never live alone.**

Tonight, there was a lizard in my bed. 


I'd had a long day. A good twelve hours of going going going. After a quick microwave dinner at 9, I was ready to slip into my soft and cuddly sheets. I grab a bag of m&m's as I leave the kitchen. I head down the hall. I enter the room. I pull back the sheets. I grab the pillow for a quick fluff and "HOLYYY SH*#*#*#*#*#*!TTT!!!!!!!!!!!" (Hyperventilating begins.)

LIZARD IN MY BED.

Yeah, this is totally not the lizard in my bed. My lizard was about
the size of this lizard's fingernail, but ohmygod when there's a
lizard in your bed DOES IT MATTER WHAT SIZE IT IS??



The following is a list of thoughts that ran through my head after discovering said lizard in my bed.


**Should I give Lizard my room? (I named him Lizard.) Should I move out? Should I go to a pet store and find something that eats lizards? (What does eat lizards? Are they prey to no one??) Is it irrational if I start to cry? Maybe I should sleep on the couch. No it's hot in there. I wonder how long Lizard has been in my bed...HOLY SH*T WHAT AM I GOING TO DO??????**

Well the boring part of this story is when I stared Lizard down for about five minutes while I formulated a stupid genius idea to get rid of Lizard by gently sweeping it off my bed with my least favorite pair of shoes. So this is what I did. And now, a half hour and about a dozen shrieks later, Lizard is roaming free somewhere on my floor.

And still, I feel like I'm about to pass out.

Oh my god ya'll this lizard was right under my pillow. What are the chances that I've EATEN a lizard in my sleep before????????? You know cause they say you eat like eight spiders a year in your sleep and I've never even seen  a spider in my bed before! Seriously. There have got to be lizards crawling all over me every night while I sleep. DEAR GOD HOW WILL I EVER SLEEP AGAIN?!???

Please, someone talk me down from this.

"The world is your oyster." Whatever that means.

I don't really feel like doing a Tuesday Top Ten today. Mainly because I've got like four half-finished Top Ten's and feel more like running my mouth about random crap than actually following through and finishing one of those lists. So today I'm just going to type until something interesting appears on the page. (Good luck right?)

Well, this is what yesterday's to-do list looked like:

1. Dr. Appt
2. Mall-pick up part THREE of Tay's birthday present!
3. Target & Walmart
4. WIN Brad Paisley and Blake Shelton tickets
5. Dinner at Toshio's with Jack and Al
6. BACHELORETTE!


Well, I ALMOST succeeded. I tried my absolute heart out to win those freakin' tickets, and as far as I'm concerned, I'm a miserable failure. I'm not even joking. But I'm not giving up yet. I'll be waiting around and calling all week. And honestly, I've never won anything- ever. Surely, it's my time. So, in conclusion, if anyone wants to volunteer to take shifts to call 99.5 every few hours so that I don't have to glue myself to the radio that would be much appreciated. You don't get to keep the tickets but I'll give you a pat on the back  and five gold stars.

Moving on.



Last night was the Bachelorette. Which was fabulous, obviously. Minus the fact that I nearly started crying when Amesy was sent home. I mean, it's not like I wanted him there, but still. Also, I was really tickled by meeting his family, and even more tickled when his mom said "The world is your oyster." Yes I'm aware that's a phrase, and no I don't have a clue what it means. But as far as I'm concerned she might as well have been wearing Ames' red pants from last week while she said it because that was downright hilar.

However, what was not hilar was Ash and JP's hometown date. Because if the entire thing didn't just make your heart melt, then you're obviously some kind of hybrid human-robot without a soul and you should just leave right now. (Also we learned that Ash was also a figure skater. So I ask you, is there anything this girl CAN'T do??!)



I adore you, JP. (Even though the fact that I can't think of any cutesy pet names for you is tremendously frustrating.) Besides the fact that he is absolutely presh, he is also so hott that it's downright sinful. Check. It. Out.

Reason number 4,987,239,482,309,841,093,809,413 I should move to New York. 

All I know is that I can't believe there are only TWO WEEKS LEFT!!!! 
(Also I'm stoked about Guys Tell All, which is on the Sunday before the finale if you didn't already know, so DON'T miss it!)

And that concludes my opinions of the Bachelorette because I wasn't super impressed/surprised with Constantine or Ben too much and they are still pretty blah. But now...

Awesome stuff that happened this weekend:

  • I got a purse for seven dollars. Apparently my rant about the price of a purse did not go unnoticed. Thanks God. 
  • I ate Wing-Stop. With my Tater Tot. And it was awesome. (Oh yeah, I love Wing-Stop.)
  • I completed present-purchasing for Tay's birthday. (10 days!)
  • I slept alot.
  • I had a banana hot fudge milkshake from Sonic. (I try really hard to come up with awesome things that don't pertain to me being a fatty, but honesty really is the best policy.)
All in all, a good lazy weekend. I promise on your mama that I've got a good Wednesday Wishlist coming up tomorrow so forgive me for being a lame-o today. 

Hugs,

Nat


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Wednesday Wishlist

Can I just start this by bragging that I successfully slept in until TEN this morning?!?!! Not five, not seven, not eight, but TEN! Oh man, felt good.

I'm super dope stoked (shh) about this Wednesday Wishlist. Primarily because Friday is payday and I am making it my main goal to purchase at least one thing on this week's list! (I'm thinking pants or bow...) So enjoy!

{ONE}

I. love. this. cam-cam. It just screams classy. (Though I guess if you're screaming classy, you're anything but.) I went to Florida two summers ago, and dropped my camera in the sand. You wouldn't think a little sand could be the end of a camera. Oh, but it was. So ever since then I haven't really had a camera. I've used my phone, or jacked other people's cams when I went somewhere really cool. Yeah, I'm such a cheapo that in two years I haven't bothered to buy a new camera because I don't feel like shelling out a hundred bucks. I know, it's sad to be me. But I adore this one. I'm so into gold right now it's not even funny. I love it. And I know my birthday already passed, but alot of you just weren't there so I'll make you a deal. Buy this for me and I'll take a picture with you and put it on my bloggity. I know, you're so compelled.

Pimp-Cam

{TWO}

Harem pants. They are so fabulous right now. I love the way Shenae Grimes paired them with a cute tank for that effortlessly casual look. And I also love the dressy feel of Kim's. They knock regular black slacks out of the park and you know they've gotta be ten times more comfortable. And super flattering! They carve out a tiny little waste and elongate the legs like crazy. Case in point, I need a pair. 



{THREE}

Since we've already touched on things that I've destroyed, I might as well throw this in there. Funny story about this watch. And by funny I mean tragic. Here's the thing. I am a terrible person. I wanted this watch so so bad for my birthday. I hinted and hinted and then finally, come birthday my sweet Taylor delivered! That little pink Betsey Johnson box. It was perfect. Shiny black, sparkly. Nice enough to be dressy but subtle enough to wear everyday. Exactly what I'd wanted. Fast forward just a week and a half later and guess what? I can't find my watch. So I proceed to freak out, tear my room apart, sob like a baby, and wonder how in the hell I could've misplaced that thing. Guess where I found it. Give up? In the washing machine. Guess what I did. Washed my brand-spankin-new Betsey Johnson watch. Yep. I did that. I mean, seriously: who does that?! So lesson learned, don't give me anything nice, because I will destroy it. This week, I'm wishing for just another chance with my perfect little watch. 
(P.S. Babe, sorry for the ten  millionth time. I promise it hurts me more than it hurts you.)



{FOUR}

I've been bringing Gossip Girl back this week. I'm watching Season 2 (the only season I have on DVD) like it's going out of style. I don't care who you are, Blair Waldorf can rock a headband. And I love this one. I honestly do feel like the big bow thing is fading out of style pretty quickly, but this one is too cute for words. And that yellow? Adorable. Also, give me this chick's hair. 



{FIVE}

Last but not least, this is so cute. A little irrational. One because I live in Texas which is on its way to becoming the Sahara, and two because it's like a hundred bucks. But how gorgeous right? How cute would this be in pictures, or hanging from the ceiling like this? Love it love it. 


And that's all for this week. Man, I've been such a good little blogger this week! So consistent! Don't get used to it. Now I'm off to lunch at Toshio's with my little Ethan.

Hugs,

Nat

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Tuesday's Top Ten: Things I Wish I Could Change

Despite last night's shallower-than-hal post dedicated entirely to The Bachelorette, I can be serious sometimes. It's rare when it happens, but it does happen. 

There are so many things I wish I could change. Things about myself, others, the world, society, just so much. Some of them I actually have the power to change, and others I never will. So here's today's...


Top Ten Things I Wish I Could Change:


1. The fact that chocolate is not one of the main food groups.
                Not a lot to say about that. Except that it’d be awesome.

2. The way everyone thinks they are Judge Judy.
                Myself included. I don’t know what it is about mankind that we think it is our divine right and destiny in life to judge everyone and their dog the second they step outside their door. You can’t go anywhere without someone shoving their opinion of you down your throat. If there is one thing I am learning, it’s this. I am not God. I can spend all day judging someone else, their appearance, their lifestyle, their beliefs-what have you, but in the end all I’ve done is present myself as someone with a deep misunderstanding and lack of human respect. Our world is complicated, now more than ever. You will never be able to fully understand why people are the way they are, or why someone acts the way that they do. And the best part is, you don’t have to.

3. My athletic ability.
                Well, it’s not so much a desire to change it as it is a desire to create some out of thin air. Alls I’m sayin is that it’d be nice to play a game with at least a slight chance of winning.  Also, it would make weight loss slightly more probable.

4. My need to be entertained 24/7.
            Think about it. Some calls me up and says, “Hey, what are you doing?” I respond, “Nothing.” That’s a lie. I’m watching TV, or facebooking, or playing Words with Friends, listening to music…something else is going on. Eckhart Tolle says that humans have lost touch with the stillness inside and our connection to nature. We have forgotten what animals and plants still know – how to just be. (No, I don’t read Eckhart Tolle, and yes, I stole that from someone else, but it’s a good point no matter who originally made it.) I need constant entertainment. I can’t just sit still,  without either turning on some form of media, or falling asleep. That’s why I need a hammock. Because surely, if I had a hammock, I could master the art of being.

5. My size of my bank account.
                Oh wait I can change that. Oops.

6. How much people drink cokes.
            It’s just terrible. I am a former Diet Dr. Pepper addict. I know its hard to quit. I know the headaches kill you and all you want is a refreshing burst of delicious sugary fizz, but it’s really just not worth it. If begging and pleading with people to stop pouring straight acid down their throats actually worked, then I could change the world. However, it does not. So please stop drinking Dr. Pepper. I know it’s the nectar of the gods, trust me, I know. But, seriously, please stop. (Also read this & this. Please just consider it!)

7. The rate of illiteracy in this country.
            32 million adults in the U.S. are functionally illiterate. Illiterate to the point that they cannot read a simple sentence. That’s sad. Reading is essential to life. I wish there was more I could do about this, but I think becoming a teacher is a good start.

8. The price of a good purse.
                Call me crazy, but it pains me to shell out twenty bucks for a purse. Pains me. Many of you might be thinking, “Twenty bucks? Cheap purse.” And that right there is what is wrong with this world! My purse collection hasn’t been updated in AGES due to the fact that I refuse to spend on a purse what I could spend on a (cheap) dinner for two! So someone please start making purses in the $10-15 range. (Side note: purse is a really weird looking word when you've been looking at it for awhile. Alright. Carry on.)

9. All the violence.
            If you think I’m naïve for wishing that, screw you. I wish that violence didn’t parade itself around so glamorously, in war, in schools, on the streets, everywhere. I wish that the millions of people who live in constant fear in their own homes could finally find some peace.

10. How fast my life is flying by.
            I wish that sixteen didn’t feel like last week. It’s making me feel old. It’s making me feel like next week will be thirty. I don’t know why we don’t believe our parents and grandparents when they tell us that it all goes by so fast. Guess they were right. Who’d a thought?

And that's all I've got.

Hugs, 

Nat

Monday, July 11, 2011

Monday: Obsessed

So, yes, I have been MIA once again, for nearly a week. But hopefully tonight's bloggity will make up for my absence. I AM SO EXCITED. Tonight is the night I have been impatiently waiting for! Read my lips: BACHELORETTE! I know that everyone in out there in the blogosphere is dying to hear all of my opinions and thoughts. So worry no more! Tonight you shall have them :)

Before I dive in, I want everyone to know exactly how serious I am when it comes to The Bachelorette. This is not just a show, entertainment, or something to do with my Monday nights. Until August 1st, (season finale, duh) The Bachelorette is my fixation. Ashley, Chris Harrison, JP, Ames, Ben, Constantine...the whole gang...they're like my best friends right now. I've read every spoiler, watched every interview, and bought every magazine with Ashley's face on it. Trust me- I'm into this. To prove it, here's a snapshot of my to-do list for today.

I'm not even joking.

That being said, could there have been any  more broken hearts on tonight's episode?! I mean, Me, Ryan, Lucas, Ashley, Brad & Emily, Me....Oh wait I already said me. The point is tonight was SAD. Except for Ames' red pants, Lucas' kimono, and the part where a little Taiwanese dog peed on Ash and Constantine's love lantern. (Yeah, if you dont wait around for the funny scenes during the credits you're totally missing out.) Anyways. Heart-break-ing. Here are some of my brief  thoughts on each guy. 
  • Hey Ryan, remember that one time you finally got your one-on-one with Ash and you spent the entire time talking about water heaters???! I do. Ryan has gotten on my nerves since the second he got that first impression rose. I've been ready for him to go home for a looooong time. However, when his little face dropped, and he said "What? You don't want to meet my family??" I nearly burst into tears. Poor little Ry-Ry. He was so heartbroken I thought he was gonna puke in the bushes. But you were never right for each other so smell ya lata. 
  • Constantine, I really do admire your honesty. He's not gonna fake some gut feeling just to make Ash happy, and you've gotta give that kind of honesty major props. He's a great guy, and I can't wait to see him around his family. But bottom line, there's not much of a spark yet. They know it, and we know it. We're getting down to the wire and this guy's just not ready for marriage.
  • Ben, you are everything Ashley wants for her future, except, you aren't MAN enough. Ben is funny, cute, smart, (has a really dorky Taylor Lautner-ish voice, but whatevs I'm looking past it) and certainly has an undeniable chemistry with Ash. But there's something missing. And tonight I figured out what it is. He's just not the man that Ashley needs. Sorry Benny boo. {P.S. Get a haircut.}
  • Lucas just really wants to be married again. I don't think he wants Ashley, he just wants a wifey. He's a really great guy, a total gentleman and I definitely enjoyed seeing him in a gold man-dress tonight. Sorry you had to go all the way back to Odessa but it just wasn't there man. 
  • Ames, you are the most hilarious person to ever grace the stage of the Bachelorette.  Seriously, those red pants!?! So wonderfully weird. And did anyone else hear his genuine congratulations on the group date when JP came back with the rose? Now that's funny. 
  • JP, you're an angel and that's all I have to say about you. Team JP all the way!
  • Oh and Ashley, that green dress she wore on the group date was to die for! Gimme gimme gimme.
So that's that. I can't believe hometown dates are next week! Just another reminder that summer is going by so so fast! If you're a Bachelorette fan with an opinion, or just want to let me know how ridiculous you think it is that I can have so much to say about a reality show, leave some  love :)

Happy Monday!

Hugs, 

Nat

P.S. Almost forgot my kitchen goddess account! Mondays are now my days off. And I'm lovin' the extended three day weekends. So today was spent running around, doing laundry, and finally preparing to make Southwestern Egg Rolls for din. I did change a few things. Added a little spinach, mexican cheese, and a little bit of red onion. They were SCRUMPTIOUS!  And I'll probably be munching on them for breakfast tomorrow.


Jack and I devoured these while glued to the TV tonight!
They were perfect for Monday night dinner on the couch.
P.S.S. Check back tomorrow for Top Ten Tuesday :)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Tuesday's Top Ten: Things I'm Excited About

With about five minutes left of Tuesday to spare...here goes! The top ten list of things I am excited about. (Yes, I know you're not supposed to end  a sentence with a preposition.) So in no particular order...

1. Sleeping in past 7 AM tomorrow! (By listing this first I sincerely hope I didn't just put myself in dangerous potential jinxing territory. Crap.)

2. Lunch with the Best Friend tomorrow (Subliminal message=lunch at Wendy's where I have carefully pre-selected one of the most delectable fast-food masterpieces ever created. Hear me. Baja Salad. Order it. It will change your life.)

Dont' you dare judge me for perusing Wendy's online menu. You know you do it too . 

3. Little Jackie Pants' Wedding on August 13th!!!!!!!!!!! (My roommate, and, yes, that really is what I call her.)

4. Taylor's Birthday. That old man will be twenty-two on July 29th. Boys are super obnoxious in that they could usually care less about their birthday. My Tater Tot is no exception. However, the excitement on my part has already begun. I've even gotten way ahead of myself and purchased part one of two PERFECT birthday presents. So this year (like last year, the year before, and the next 50+ years to come) he's just gonna have to suck it up and just enjoy the hoopla I'll be showering him with! :)

Yes, that is a happy meal box on his head.


5. Jacklyn's Bachelorette party. In just a few short weekends it's party time. So hide your kids, hide your wife... Just watch out world.

6. Boyfriend was an ANGEL this past weekend and brought me his PS2 because my DVD player has been broken since Eve took her first nibble out of the apple. Not an exaggeration. Now thanks to that sweet guy my Friends watching habit/addiction is in full-swing once again! 

7. Playing master chef later on this week and cooking some [hopefully] delicious Southwestern Egg Rolls! I've decided on this carefully selected recipe from Taste of Home. Can't wait to try it out!

Trust me, I know it's a little sad that two out of ten things I'm excited about are, in fact, edible.


8. The new air freshener I put in my car this weekend (LittlePinkChristmasTree) that greets me with its fabulously floral scent every time I hop in the Camry.

9. The arrival of my latest Amazon order. My "To Read" list grows so much in the Summer. Soooo many books I've been dying to read and waiting around for a paycheck big enough to even make a dint in that list. That little brown box can't come soon enough!

10. Only FIVE more days until the next episode of The Bachelorette!! (obsessed). If this doesn't excite you, then I don't know what will. Amen?



Happy Tuesday Everyone!

Hugs,

Nat

Monday, July 4, 2011

Monday Movie Wanna-See

Some people hate to admit it. But I'm not one of those people. I am addicted to anything media. Maybe it's because I'm a girl. Maybe it's because of the American culture. Maybe it's just the fact that I'm a sucker for entertainment. Whatever. I love movies. I ADORE them. So here's your Monday Movie Wanna-See :)

Ever since I saw One Day at Barnes and Noble a few weeks ago, I put this book on my to-read list. I'm embarrassed to say I haven't read it- yet. But I'm putting in an Amazon order tonight so hopefully in the near future that won't be the case. 

If you're interested, here's the quick back of the book summary: "This episodic story takes place during a single day each year for two decades in the lives of Dex and Em. Dexter, the louche public school boy, and Emma, the brainy Yorkshire lass, meet the day they graduate from university in 1988 and run circles around one another for the next 20 years. Dex becomes a TV presenter whose life of sex, booze, and drugs spins out of control, while Em dully slogs her way through awful jobs before becoming the author of young adult books. They each take other lovers and spouses, but they cannot really live without each other."

Sounds pretty good, right? Let me just say this. This trailer is adorable. I love Jim Sturgess (Thank you, Across the Universe) and I adore Anne Hathaway (Thank you, Princess Diaries and Love & Other Drugs). The only thing I'm not sure I'm on board with is Anne Hathaway's British accent. I mean, I just don't know if I buy it. But we'll see. 

I've heard conflicting release date info, (some in July and some in August) and I'm not a good enough "googler" to figure out which is accurate. I'm hoping to high heaven that it's July, and SOON! But check back once I've seen it for a wanna-be movie critic post!


Hugs, 

Nat

Weekend Happenings

What. A. Weekend. Such a great weekend that it's kept me MIA from the blog world for awhile. But it's days like the past few that make me so so incredibly thankful for summer vacations. So let me catch you all up on this weekend's happenings:

Friday my little Tater Tot came down to see me, so to celebrate I played kitchen goddess and made us a scrumptious dinner of pecan crusted chicken with spicy honey mustard dipping sauce and white wine vinegar green beans.



I found the recipe at this blog and it was such a hit! It was super quick and easy and turned out even better than I expected. I'd definitely recommend it to any wanna-be chefs like me! :)

Saturday was errand day. Went for a morning run, did some laundry, made the necessary stops at Uptown, Target, Half Price Books, etc. Then went to dinner with the family and the Love Bug at Macaroni Grill. Delish. After some fun family time, we finished up the evening with a little crime solving Law and Order SVU marathon. Just  to ensure a sleepless night. I know, I know, it's terrible. But seriously, I just can't get enough.

And then finally, Sunday was 4th of July celebration. Like many of you, I'm sure, this is my favorite holiday of the year. I love swimsuits, hot dogs, pool parties, fireworks, and all that patriotic jibber jabber is ok, too. So Sunday morning Taylor and I headed out to Fort Worth, met up with some good friends and then headed out to Granbury Lake where some friends-of-friends have a dock. (Yes, we are those tacky people who mooch and tag-along, aren't we all!?) The day was spent lounging around on one of those inflatable islands that looks something like this.


Only imagine murkier water and add anywhere from 10-20 pounds on each of those annoyingly skinny chicks. And there you have it. The thing was called "Emperor Island" which we affectionately re-named "Adult Island" in attempts to limit its passengers to those 21 and up. Don't worry, don't worry, the children got their own island, only smaller and without cupholders :) After soaking up some serious sun, we finished up the evening with fried fish and fireworks. And that is why 4th of July is the BEST. This one is definitely up there with one of my favorite 4th of July weekends in all of my 21 years! ;)

Holls!


(Please disregard the nasty lake-water hair. Because, no, I'm not
one of those people that looks like a dazzling beach angel
when I step out of the water. Reality check.) 

So after all the weekend excitement, I come home ecstatic and looking forward to watching tonight's episode of The Bachelorette (obsessed) only to find out this week's a re-run. Obviously I'm devastated. I mean, since when does scripted, network-induced romance take a holiday??

So today has been dedicated to being lazy and catching up on all the DVR goodies I recorded over the weekend. (Cause, did you know that there were like twenty seven million different TV show marathons on this fabulous 4th of July weekend?! Yes. One-happy-TV-loving-girl.) Hope everyone had a fantastic weekend!

Hugs,

Nat

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wednesday Wishlist

I've been wanting to do a Wednesday Wishlist for awhile. Mainly because I'm constantly wishing for things. It's just what I need. Yet another opportunity for me to rant about and gawk at things I could neither need nor afford. Seems to be right up my alley ;)


{ONE}
If I don't belong in this thing, then NO ONE does! They are they cutest. Every time I pass one on the street, I get all foggy-brained and imagine myself behind the wheel and get that warm fuzzy feeling inside. If we were being realistic, then I'd say ideally my next vehicle would be more in the realm of soccer-mom SUV. But I don't really think that Wednesday Wishlist is the time for realism. So we'll stick with what's a little more entertaining-fantasy. 


Also, keep in mind the "Camry with Character" I've been driving around since December. What a beaut.




{TWO}
Next, a little James Avery drooling. My friend Holly has this ring, and literally every minute I'm with her is spent gawking at this GORGEOUS thing on her finger. Want. So. Bad. 




{THREE}
Oh, please please please please please please please please please! Tell me that these don't just make your heart sing. Go ahead, I won't believe you. I'm so obsessed with nudes right now it's not even funny.No one can make a pair of pumps like Jessica Simpson.  These are adorable. They're such a modern, sexy twist on the Mary Jane's I was wearing in the fourth grade. 




{FOUR}
How wonderfully whimsical is this chandelier? I would kill to have it in my [make-believe] breakfast nook. Anthropologie is the average girl's nightmare. Full of beautiful clothes and home furnishings that no normal person could ever in their weakest moment afford. This teacup chandelier? $1,800. OBSCENE! I mean even the sale rack is over-achieving for this girl. So this is without a doubt wishlist material. Seriously. Stuff. Of. Dreams.





{FIVE}
And last but not least, if I'm allowed to be a little over-the-top ridiculous (what the hell, it's MY blog?!) I wish these two would get back together! Seriously, breaking my heart. 





Happy Wednesday :)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Welcome to the Blogosphere...

Hello little blog world! I feel very You've Got Mail right now, like every world I type should be narrated aloud by Tom Hanks or Meg Ryan. What a fantastic movie. Anyways, it's 2011. I'm emailing, face-booking, and tweeting (half-heartedly) so why not add more to the cyber clutter and take up blogging?! Surely I've got just as much to say as the other twenty million people out there who beat me to it.

Right?

:)

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