Friday, March 30, 2012

The Library, The Help & Miranda

Let me just start by saying - I LOVE THE LIBRARY!  I stopped by the library Wednesday night to return my latest read.  I know I am behind the times, but I just finished The Help by Kathyrn Stockett.  It was great - two thumbs up!  The only part that was a little cumbersome was deciphering the dialect of the main characters.  Good news is - you will catch on pretty quick.  I am waiting for the movie to become available at the library so I can see how it compares.  My rule of thumb - always read the book before watching the movie.

While at the library I picked up Miranda Lambert's new CD:  Four the Record.

Yes - you can borrow CDs from the library!  I was surprised too!
I went through the CD twice today at work and I'm only giving it 2.5 stars. Other than the 2 singles that have already been released on the radio, there were only 1-2 other songs I really enjoyed.  I was a little disappointed because I have been a huge Miranda fan since her first CD - Kerosene - was released in 2005.  I don't have to return the CD until April 11th so there is still time for it to grow on me.  I'll let you know if I change my mind.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Chicken Pot Pie

Tuesday night, I made Patrick the meal he has been requesting for weeks now - a good old-fashioned chicken pot pie.  This was my 3rd pot pie I have made for him since we have been married and this version was my best yet so I just had to share.  (Plus it's super easy - yay!)

1 box refrigerated pie crust

1 can cream of chicken
3 chicken breasts cooked & cubed
1 bag of frozen broccoli
1 can diced potatoes
1 handful of any kind of shredded cheese

I cooked the chicken on Monday night while I was making dinner.  I marinated it in a basic Italian dressing, baked it, let it cool and threw it in the fridge for Tuesday night's pot pie.  

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  
In a glass pie pan, arrange one sheet of pie crust so all edges overlap equally.
Cook the broccoli according to the directions on the bag.  I cooked mine on the stove, but I also tend to by the bags that steam in the microwave.
Cut the chicken into small cubes or slices or shreds.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine cooked broccoli, cubed chicken, potatoes (drained), cream of chicken and shredded cheese.  I added the shredded cheese as an afterthought because honestly, cheese makes everything taste better.  
Pour the filling into the pie pan on top of the first layer of crust.  Smooth out as evenly as possible.
Add the second layer of pie crust and pinch all of the edges tight so that the filling does not overflow in the oven.
Use a knife to make a few slits in the pie crust to allow steam to escape.  You can also carve initials, draw a picture, do something as equally creative.
Place the pie pan on a cookie sheet (just in case there happens to be any overflow of filling) and stick in the oven.
Bake for 45 minutes or until pie crust is golden brown.

I have also made pot pies using other veggies such as corn and green beans, but so far the broccoli and potatoes have been my favorite combination.


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - The Shoes

I mentioned before that I am a recent newlywed.  Patrick & I were married on November 12th, 2011 at my hometown church.  We had a big wedding and a not-so-big budget.  I am hoping to share some wedding budget tips and tricks I learned along with way with any future brides out there.

This week I want to talk about one wedding detail I struggled with for the longest time - the shoes.  I probably purchased at least 10 pairs of shoes online before I found the pair of my dreams.  Before I shamelessly post a dozen photos of my amazing wedding shoes (because my photographer took that many - thanks WhiteKlump Photography!), I want to fill you in on some of the places I looked before I found that perfect pair.
Yes, you read that right -  They have an enormous selection of wedding shoes available at reasonable prices.  I almost chose this pair but the more I wore them around the house, the more the little straps by the toes started digging into my feet.  They were just not comfortable enough for me to wear the entire day.  I ended up returning these (and 4 other pairs I ordered) to the nearest Sears store.  The returns were easy, no questions asked and I would definitely order online from them again.  Here's a tip about ordering from Sears - check online for any coupon codes and make sure you take advantage of any free shipping offers!
I ordered one pair of shoes from Zappos - I chose this site because of their free shipping and return shipping.  When I just did a quick search on their site, they listed 446 wedding shoes available for sale!  The only downside I found was that the shoes tended to be a little on the pricier side compared with other deals I found.

David's Bridal
Although David's Bridal's website showcases some beautiful footwear options, they also have a very strict return policy so that was enough to keep me away.

I also think I made several purchases (and returns) to several shoes stores at the mall.

Now onto the good stuff:
I stumbled upon my dream shoes one day while doing a quick google search for "pearl wedding shoes".  I browsed through several pages of images before something caught my eye.  The image led me to the website  This is a website specializing in designer wedding shoes that are gorgeous.  The good news for me - and you - is that they do have a section devoted to clearance items.  I still cannot get over the fact that the shoes I fell in love were down to one pair in stock - in my size - for $29!  How lucky can a girl get?!?  

So, without further ado - the moment you have all been waiting for.  I present to you - my wedding shoes:
They are "Pearl" by Fifi.  I love the cluster of pearls on the top of the foot.  I love the baby blue insole.  I love the rhinestone buckle on the ankle.  I love everything.
What- you wanted to see another picture?  

I wasn't able to find any websites still offering these for sale, but you may be able to find them on wedding resale websites.  

And how do they look on??  Perfect!

Good luck finding your own dream shoes!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

There are still nice people in the world

Today I almost had a heart attack.  I ran to Target on my lunch break to pick up a few items.  When I got back to work I realized I left my purse in the shopping cart in Target's parking lot.  I rushed back to Target and my purse was no longer in the shopping cart where I left it.  I went inside and ALLELUIA!  It was there.  The lady in customer service told me that a nice old man turned it in when he saw it sitting the in cart outside.  It's good to know there are still nice people in the world.  :)

In other news, this experience reminded me that I really need to take an inventory on what I keep in my wallet. On my drive back to Target, my mind was racing through all the cards I would need to cancel.  Check out this Protect my ID blog for more tips.
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