Archive for January, 2011

Fat Jack

January 21, 2011

We’ve been roommates with Jack for two weeks now and we’re slowly learning all of his little personality quirks and habits. He’s made us laugh quite a bit as well, especially between the hours of 7 & 9 pm when he’s in his hyper/playful mood. My parents came down to have dinner with us and meet Jack for the first time and just as they were about to leave we spotted him sitting like this on the bar stool…

He had been leaning over cleaning his stomach and when he looked up he still had his legs on either side of his body. We all died laughing to the point of tears; he just looked so ridiculous. You see, Jack is quite large; we had tried to weight him on our scale at home and we figured him to be around 10 pounds but after a check-up at the vet we now know that he weighs 14 pounds. What a fatty! Looks like someone needs to ease up on the meow mix.

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Shrimp Tacos with Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream

January 19, 2011

Lately, in an effort to branch out of our semi-boring mainstay of dinner recipes, Mark and I have been adamant about trying some new things. A couple of weeks ago we brought home some mahi-mahi {which I’ve never cooked before} and used a rendition of this ginger-soy glazed recipe; it was amazing, almost as if it had come from a restaurant.

So when we bought some shrimp on our last grocery run I knew I wanted to try something different. I scoured the internet and happened upon this recipe for shrimp tacos:

via: Life’s Ambrosia

Shrimp Tacos with Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream

20 medium shrimp, peeled & deveined

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 tsp. ground cumin

1/2 tsp. chili powder

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

1 T. olive oil

4 tortillas (the recipe calls for corn but we used flour)

oil for frying

shredded lettuce

diced tomatoes

sliced avocado

Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream

1/4 c. sour cream

2 T. chopped, fresh cilantro

1/4 tsp. ground cumin

1/2 tsp. lime zest

2 T. lime juice

salt to taste

– In a bowl, whisk together 1 T. oil, garlic, ground cumin, chili powder, salt and cayenne pepper. Add in shrimp and toss to coat completely. Cover and refrigerate for 15-20 minutes to allow flavors to marry.

– While the shrimp is marinating, mix together the cilantro-lime sour cream ingredients in a small bowl and dice and slice your tomato and avocado.

– Cook shrimp in skillet on medium heat until pink and cooked through, about 5 minutes.

– Lightly coat small pan with oil over low-medium heat. Warm tortillas until soft.

– Spoon 5 shrimp onto each tortilla, top with lettuce, tomato, avocado and cilantro-lime sour cream.

This recipe is so simple and flavorful and takes very little time to make from start to finish. I can’t wait to make this again!

Meet Jack

January 8, 2011

Everyone, meet Jack, our newly adopted Russian blue cat! Once again we had really good luck with Craigslist and we were led to this beautiful, green-eyed boy. His owner is being deployed and wouldn’t be able to take care of him while he was gone.

He is a very chill, sweet-mannered kitty, he loves to travel and he doesn’t have any undesirable habits like scratching furniture or refusing to use his litter box. When we got him home he spent the first few hours exploring and sniffing out the place, but eventually he calmed down and laid on the sofa with Mark.

Surprisingly, he’s warmed up to us pretty quickly considering we’ve only known each other for a day. His newest thing is to sit in my lap with his paws on my shoulders and head butt my face, ha ha. We’re so happy to finally add to our little family; welcome home Jack!

Bring On the New

January 5, 2011

At the beginning of every new year, I {along with everyone else in the world} tend to evaluate my life, it’s direction and purpose to see if anything needs tweaking. I’ve never been much on New Years resolutions and I didn’t realize exactly why until I read this quote from my daily email devotional:

“But God knows that these promises and resolutions are often grounded not in His Word but in our flesh. We focus on the end result and not on the process.”

So many times I’ve set out to make a change in my life with only the end result in mind: find a new job, be a better wife, tone up that booty, read more, blog more, set aside time for God. Instead of tackling these goals head on, I need to step back, look within myself and find what is truly hindering my success. In order to find a new job I need to overcome my self confidence issues and fear of failure. In order to be a better wife I need to stop putting myself ahead of my husband and to love him unconditionally and enthusiastically. In order to tone up that booty I’ve got to stop using food as a crutch for my boredom and emotions. In order to read and blog more I need to re-prioritize how I spend my free time, stay off of Facebook and turn off the TV. In order to spend more time with God I need to place more importance on my relationship with Him.

These are all very big, very real issues for me and the bad habits run deep, but I’m going to try my best to make some serious life adjustments this year. With God and the most wonderful husband in the world at my side, I know it’s possible.

I pray that if you have New Years resolutions this year you will take a moment to search for the underlying challenge, the real key to your success.

Happy 2011!

Christmas 2010

January 4, 2011

This year Mark and I spent Christmas in Houston with his parents, grandparents, siblings and nephew. Somehow we were both able to take off an entire week {thank you Lord} and we spent most of our evenings catching up with old high school friends and just enjoying being disconnected from our normal lives. I didn’t take a single picture the entire trip and to be honest I feel quite liberated by that fact. Every time I get upset with myself for not having photographic evidence of my memories I think of the song 3×5 by John Mayer and I’m reminded that pictures aren’t everything, memories of time with loved ones are what matter.

These are some of those lovely memories that will live in my heart forever:

– Driving around the neighborhood on Christmas Eve night to see all the lights.

– Even though I’m 24 I still had trouble sleeping due to excitement.

– Logan getting his first train set from Santa and lying on the ground watching the wheels spin.

– Tammy tearing up after opening a gift certificate from us for a complimentary bathroom renovation.

– Mark claiming his favorite gift was his new tennis bag.

– Sleeping on our new Tempur-Pedic pillows for the first time {heaven}.

– Catching up with old friends.

– Thinking we could finish the bathroom in one day.

– Vowing to never buy a house with existing wallpaper.

– Driving back to Austin at 9pm on New Years Eve and watching the fireworks along the way.

Another great Christmas in the books. I am so incredibly grateful that we were able to spend that much time with family, especially Mark’s dad who came from London and his grandparents who traveled from Boston. Hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas!