Wednesday, August 31, 2016

State Fair Shenanigans

Yesterday Andy and I spent the day at the State Fair. The weather was beautiful, and the crowds were super tolerable (which is saying a lot for the MN fair). We were able to take a shuttle over to the fair grounds from the campus - saving us a lot of frustration about parking! It was a perfect day, and we knocked off all of our "must trys" for this year.

Here is our compilation of photos - all from good ole snapchat










These are deep fried nachos... delish!!



I would say my favorites were the Deep Fried S'mores & the Raspberry Wine Smoothie. It was fun to sample all different kinds of beer, but in the end I am truly more of a wine person than a beer person. 

Until next year, MN state fair!! 

Friday, August 26, 2016

Five on Friday


You know the drill - time for a little Five on Friday today!


- ONE -

Yes - cheers to the weekend but in my case, cheers with a big cup of COFFEE because it will be a busy, productive one for me. Andy and I are going camping next weekend with our friends and my to-do list is about 10 pages long. I never realized how much prep work goes into camping... airing out the tent, planning meals, buying food, prepping food, gathering supplies.. it's endless! But we are looking forward to a weekend away with some of our favorite people.


- TWO -



MN State Fair has officially begun as of yesterday, and I will be sneakily be taking a "mental health day" off of work to go out and get some sun and eat lots of deep fried goodness. Top foods I'm dying to devour this year are: deep fried nachos, Sweet Martha's cookies (an absolute must every year), deep fried grilled cheese bites, reuben pickles, and chocolate chip cookie BEER! How delicious does that sound?! Side note: yes, the photo above gives me slight anxiety but they don't call it "The Great Minnesota Get Together" for nothing, right?!


- THREE -

Andy and I officially have made the first move in adopting a furry little friend next year. We have been in contact with a Minnesota breeder that we just adore! Unfortunately, we won't be able to have one until next August. But if everything goes well we're hoping that the litter she has in the spring will be ready to go home around the time we move. Exciting things are happening, folks!


Small preview dead giveaway of the breed we've been searching for. 



- FOUR -

I'm currently loving this fallish feeling weather we're experiencing in the north right now! It was 60 degrees when I left for work this morning, and I got to sport my new army green jacket that I am absolutely in love with. Now I just need to stop myself from looking up every fall recipe until September 1st.. 


- FIVE -

Andy and I made some delicious wings on Tuesday night... we made three sauces - parm garlic, honey BBQ, and just a traditional buffalo. The parm garlic was lacking some parm flavor, but the homemade honey BBQ was out of this world! As for the buffalo, well that's always a good one :)



Excuse the snapchat photos :)



Monday, August 22, 2016

Secrets

I can finally let out the secret that I've been holding in forrrrevvvvver.

MY BEST FRIEND IS ENGAGED!!! 

Backstory: Chelsea and I have been the best of friends since we were 6 years old. We met each other through dance class and instantly clicked. Our parents quickly developed a close friendship too, which always made her seem more like a cousin. We continued to dance together, attended various awful camps together (Girl Scout camp, Drama Camp, dance camps, "Girl's Club", etc.), traveled the U.S. together with our families, and made hundreds of wonderful memories. From ballet classes and American Girl dolls, to chasing boys and pulling pranks, to our college years and getting into even more trouble together. We have laughed together, cried together, celebrated together, and grieved together. She has been there through it all, and I can't wait to be by her side as she enters this new stage of life with her wonderful man.

Michael had texted both myself and our other good friend, Emily, to personally ask our permission/approval (after asking her parents of course) to marry our best friend. That was three weeks ago, so I'm sure you can imagine the amount of stress I was under to keep this completely hidden. But everything turned out perfectly in the end. He asked her at her grandparent's 50th wedding anniversary party - where all of her friends and family could witness. The way her asked fit her perfectly.

I'll let the pictures speak for themselves...
















Friday, August 19, 2016

Five on Friday


Time for another round of Five on Friday, so lets get to it!


- ONE -




As of last night at 7:15pm, I have officially completed my first year of graduate school! Of course, this is reason to celebrate so I treated myself to Caribou AND Einstein Bagels this morning. Naughty treat, but I have no regrets.

I am so ecstatic to be done with my first year, but I'm ready to power through this next year and then offi



- TWO -



If you didn't check out my post this week on my delicious buffalo chicken chili, you should scroll on down and do so! It was even better heated up for lunches. However, it was a tad bit spicy for me so I think next time I'll decrease the amount of buffalo sauce in it and increase the amount of chicken broth.


- THREE -



I recently got this scarf off of Amazon because it got good reviews, looked perfect for fall, and was a complete steal at just over $10. I finally received it in the mail this week and I am so impressed with the quality. It is very true to the pictures online. I might have to order a few more before the chilly temperatures hit. This girl loves a good blanket scarf! They also have a ton of color combinations.


- FOUR - 

I've been on a baking hiatus lately and am desperately in need of some yummy ideas. I might have to wait until September, when I can go crazy with apples, pumpkin, cinnamon, etc. I can only bake so many fruity things before I start to crave fall and winter treats. So any last minute summer ideas, throw them this way!


- FIVE - 

I am overall just thrilled that it's the weekend and this one is definitely going to be one for the books! Lately I've just been feeling so excited about everything in life and what's in store in this next year. Cheers to good vibes :)






Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Buffalo Chicken Chili

I'm so excited to share one of my favorite recipes today! I made this last winter, and definitely forgot how yummy and easy it is! There's no doubt that I looooove a good soup/chili/stew recipe - even if it is the middle of the hottest month.

I made this last night after getting home from work/gym/impromptu Trader Joe's run. It took about 30 minutes to make, and then I let it simmer for an additional 45. We chose celery sticks as a low-carb side, and it went perfectly!

Pretty sure this is going to become a staple for those chilly months ahead.


Buffalo Chicken Chili

4 cups shredded chicken
1 small red onion, diced
Buffalo Sauce (Frank's mild wing sauce is the best)
2 packets of ranch seasoning
1 cup of chunky salsa
2 cans of great northern white beans
1 cup of chicken broth
1 small container heavy cream

Bake and shred your chicken. Saute onion in olive oil until translucent. Add chicken, 1 packet of ranch seasoning, and buffalo sauce to cover. Saute a few more minutes.

In soup pot (I used a dutch oven so all of these steps could be in one pot), combined chicken mixture, beans, salsa, 2nd packet of ranch seasoning, chicken broth, and more buffalo sauce (taste as needed).

Let simmer on low until heated through and add in cream until it reaches desired consistency and taste.

We used crushed corn tortilla chips, sour cream, & avocado as toppings and it was perfect with that - but you could also add shredded cheese.




Sunday, August 14, 2016

Weekending

This weekend was Andy's last real, free weekend of the summer. He will be working the next two weekends, and then it's Labor Day weekend - which we are celebrating by going camping with our friends. Then after that it's officially fall (in my book). So we spent our weekend soaking up these last summer days 100%

We started our Friday with a nice workout (much needed for all of the treating we would do during the weekend). We spent our night checking out a wing spot a few towns over. This place had over 80 wing flavors, too many to choose just one! So we ended up splitting 4 orders of 6 so we could sample a few different flavors.



Sauce choices: "Nacho Average Wing" (covered in this spicy queso sauce and with all the taco toppings on them), "Blue Moon" (Blue cheese sauce + the cheese crumbles), "Tom Saywer" (strawberry BBQ), and one other one that was just a huge combination of spice, garlic, soy sauce, and some orangish-cheese sauce that was just to die for.

We then went over to the Marcus theater - which has those huge reclining seats that feel like a cloud of comfortableness - to see Suicide Squad. We got there early, so we were able to grab a drink at the movie theater bar. Definitely worth seeing in theaters - the acting was on point!


Saturday morning we checked out a popular diner in uptown, where we had some incredible biscuits and gravy. Sorry no picture, we inhaled them as soon as they came out :)

We then spent the day biking to various breweries across Northeast Minneapolis. We are smack dab in the middle of dozens of breweries, so it made for a perfect summer afternoon.

Plus we got some exercise ;) I think the beer cancelled that out though.





I sure do love this guy!



We were so exhausted by the time we got back that the only solution was a Papa Murphy's pizza and catching up on our shows.

This morning we woke up and enjoyed some donuts & coffee. Side note: Dunkin' Doughnuts chocolate doughnut coffee - is the BEST coffee I've ever tasted. We had some a few weeks back and could never find it anywhere, so I was sure they discontinued it. BUT they had a fully stocked shelf of it at cub yesterday so I can finally enjoy that deliciousness again. If you're a coffee lover (and you love sweet coffee) you gotta try this stuff :)

We spent the day running errands, checking out the Farmer's Market, and making our Mississippi Roast, & watching Secret Life of Pets (just decent - glad we didn't see it in theaters).


Farmer's Market finds :) Along with some fresh green beans, potatoes, and grapes.


So perfect :) Hope ya'll had a great weekend too!


Thursday, August 11, 2016

Confessions.

Confessions. 


I confess that I've been lacking on blogging. This is partly been due to my go go go schedule lately, and trying to soak up the last bit of summer whenever I'm not sitting at my desk at work. This will change soon though! Especially with all of my fall inspired blog posts.

I confess that I came into work at noon today. I wasn't feeling the best this morning and barely got any sleep last night. So I soaked up an extra couple hours of sleep this morning and felt 10 times better. Plus for once I was able to make a breakfast that wasn't cereal or a piece of toast and that was glorious (I also confess that it was just some scrambled eggs, folks). 

I confess that I want need a pet. I've been checking up on my friend's cat this week while she's on vacation and cuddling that little fur ball has really made my nights. Unfortunately, project: puppy has to take the back seat until next year.

Also.. who doesn't love snapchat filters on animals?? 



I confess that all I've been thinking about is redecorating. And anyone who follows me on Pinterest can attest to that. Andy and I won't be moving until next summer but there's nothing wrong with a little planning, right??

I confess that I'm crushing on this sign. I think it would look perfect by a little coffee bar, which are very trendy right now.

I confess that I went against my diet and ate carbs for dinner last night. But who can turn down their own mother's cooking? No one. That's who. Plus it was Pasta Primavera, which is just fantastic. 

I confess that I had the most amazing drink at the Wisconsin State Fair. Whoever came up with this idea is just genius! It consisted of two scoops of caramel icecream and Angry Orchard hard cider poured over that (like a float). Then the rim of the cup was dipped in caramel and crushed peanuts. Holy wow!! We will be incorporating this drink into our fall party menu. 



I confess that Rascal Flatt's is just as amazing live. We went to the concert with Andy's family for his mom's birthday and it was incredible!



I confess that I will be having a frozen dinner tonight. And I'm not even mad about it. Especially because it's the Trader Joe's black bean & corn enchilada one - which you should try this deliciousness if you haven't already!


I'll be back tomorrow with a little round of Five on Friday. Happy Thursday lovelies! 

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Fall Wishlist

Today I'm sharing my wishlist for all items fall! Which is the best season ever - if you weren't aware yet.





I'm loving these styles right now because they're so versatile and most items can be dressed up or dressed down! Also loving how each can easily be paired with different things to make a complete different look. 

What's on your list for the upcoming season??

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

August Goals

We've officially hit August which means one month until it's finally okay to burn fall scented candles, bust out the chunky knit sweaters and boots, and sip pumpkin spice lattes until you start to turn orange (for the record - I hate pumpkin spice lattes and am definitely reaching for the caramel apple flavors at the first sight of this season).

BUT summer is not over and there's still a lot to accomplish. My planner is jam packed with lists, and some of my lists turn into a list of things I need to make a list about (AHHH!) but I'm thinking that sharing my to-do with the world will give me more motivation. So lets get to it!



Get Camping Equipment Ready | Myself, Andy, and our friends are going camping over Labor Day weekend at a place my two girlfriends' and our families used to take us when we were preteens/teenagers. We have to air out the tent, plan meals, grocery shop, and make sure we'll be able to get everything into two cars.

Side note: I'd be lying if I didn't say our main goal back then was to scope out boys at the pool - we would spend hours straightening our bleached hair and strategically picking out our favorite outfit combinations (which of course included copious amounts of Hollister and Abercrombie) just hoping we'd meet some cute skater boy with shaggy hair. Oh how times have changed :)

Haul Load to Goodwill | There is just a pile of boxes and clothes in the dining room that desperately need to go to Goodwill so they can get new owners that need them. Somehow I always forget about this - I'm thinking it's partly due to the boxes being super heavy.

Schedule Appointments | I need to schedule a haircut and color for fall, and my annual doctors appointment (eek - I hate the doctors).

Plan End of the Summer Get Together | Okay this is a fun one, but still needs planning nonetheless. Currently looking for easy, bulk drink recipes and some fun easy appetizer recipes.

Get to the State Fair | Minnesota boasts about having the second largest state fair in the country! It's a lot of fun, and I know those deep fried foods on a stick are just calling my name. Some of my fav foods include: fresh chocolate chip cookies from Sweet Marthas, cheese curds, gizmos, dole whips, the milkshakes, and deep fried pickles.

Organize Desk and Contemplate Selling | My desk is just a place where I hoard junk - aka, a huge M-E-S-S. I also don't really need a desk much anymore, since I do majority of my homework on my bed (bad habit) or in the livingroom. I would love to get a cute chair and end table to fill the space. This might have to be a September or even November project though.


Something like this would be perfect :)

Read a New Book | I've got my eyes on the new Harry Potter book


What are your goals for this last month of summer?